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Volunteer in malaria tropical disease in Ghana, West Africa

New Developments in Malaria Prevention, Detection and Treatment

Date Posted: 03/10/2018

It's always great to find out about new ways to tackle malaria, here are just a few of the most recent developments.

New Developments in Malaria Prevention, Detection and Treatment

 

It's always great to find out about new ways to tackle malaria, here are just a few of the most recent developments.

 

Prevention

A new combination of chemicals impregnated into chemically treated bed nets caused a 12% reduction in selected villages in rural Burkina Faso, if this were to be rolled out across the country it would have reduced the number of malaria attacks in children under five by 700,000, or by 1.2m for the whole population 

Detection

Four students in Uganda have recently won the Royal Academy of Engineering Africa innovation prize for their malaria testing device. Currently malaria is diagnosed with a blood test but this new test shines a red beam of light on to the user's finger, detecting a by-product of the malaria parasite. It could transform malaria diagnosis by speeding up testing times and does not use invasive needles that children, in particular, can struggle with.  

Treatment

See this press release about a new drug that offers a radical cure (prevents relapse) to people infected with a certain type of malaria: Plasmodium Vivax. This parasite infects the blood and causes malaria symptoms but can also lie dormant in the liver where it can reactivate and cause symptoms of malaria weeks, months or even years after the initial infection. It is rare in Ghana, but is prevalent in Madagascar and parts of the horn of Africa as well as Asia and Latin America. Although not the deadliest parasite, P. vivax malaria infections can lead to severe disease and death. 

 

Our Work

Over the next few weeks PWA are embarking on the first stage of their 2018 malaria prevention programme, part funded by the James Tudor Trust, which promises to be the most comprehensive yet. Building on past pilot work we’re combining preventative education with children and adults, testing & treatment events in partnership with the Ghana Health Service, and providing treated mosquito nets to selected high risk areas. We’ll keep you updated as work progresses.

If you have knowledge and skills in malaria or running public health campaigns then take a look at the Malaria Prevention Programme page to see how you can get involved.

Author: Partner West Africa

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