Your MACEPA Malaria Minute: CHW expansion

By Chelsea Montes De Oca
Advocacy and Communications Officer, MACEPA, and Global Health Corps Fellow

In Mbala District, in Zambia’s Northern Province, just a few kilometers from the Tanzania border, community health workers (CHWs) were trained to help the Ministry of Health roll out its integrated community case management program in a joint effort between MACEPA and our PATH sister project PAMO (or, the Program for the Advancement of Malaria Outcomes). Northern Zambia has the highest malaria burden in the country so these volunteers were a welcome addition to the area. The new recruits practiced their skills at Kawimbe Rural Health Centre on the shores of Lake Chila before heading home to serve their communities.

Photos: PATH/Chris Lungu

Pedaling toward elimination

Community health workers need to reach the furthest ends of their communities. Toward that end, the Churches Health Association of Zambia (CHAZ), a Global Fund recipient in Zambia, handed out nearly 4,000 bicycles to the Ministry of Health through the National Malaria Elimination Centre. These bicycles are the durable brand which were recommended as part of the basic CHW package, the essential equipment they need to properly conduct community surveillance. The ceremony was officiated over by Dr. Silumesi, Director of Public Health, who emphasized the importance of health and its relationship to the countries’ economic development. Dr. Silumesi and the event emcee even test-drove the merchandise.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Photos: PATH/Chelsea Montes De Oca

Community engagement

Beyond Lusaka, community engagement meetings are underway in villages across Western Province, paving the way for the upcoming campaigns on mass drug administration and indoor residual spraying, and to sensitize communities about the vital work of CHWs. See below!

A drama group performs on how CHWs conduct their work in the community.

Community engagement in the Mukusi community in Zambia.

“If we are serious with malaria elimination by 2021, I would suggest that our malaria agents be empowered to monitor whether community members are really sleeping under ITNs and checking whether the ITNs are correctly hanging in our houses.” – Mr. Robert Lubinda of Malumani Village in Zambia

“I want to testify on how my family and I have benefited from MDA. Ever since you started MDA in Magumwi area, I have not suffered from malaria in the past two years. This drug DHAP has really made a huge difference in my life. This program needs to be highly commended.” – Induna Bollen Mbeya of Mujiwa village

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Photos: PATH/Chilumba Sikombe

Following up on every case

MACEPA staff in Senegal continue to demonstrate their commitment no matter the conditions. Ndiatene Village in the Saint Louis area can be very difficult to access during the rainy season; roads often flood. As these photos show, that didn’t stop the determined team from investigating malaria cases in the area. Stay tuned for more photos in your next Malaria Minute!

Mosquitoes genetically modified to crash species that spreads malaria

Malaria has been a prominent topic in the news, specifically coverage about the development of genetically modified mosquitoes to fight malaria. Outlets including NPR, The New York Times, and Wired analyzed this technological breakthrough and its potential implications. The process involves manipulating the genetics in mosquitoes to essentially render malaria-carrying mosquitoes extinct. But some worry about the environmental impacts this could have on entire ecosystems. 

For another read, here‘s an op-ed on the future of global poverty from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

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