AngloGold Ashanti Iduapriem (AAI) Gold Mines has committed an amount of GH¢ 400,000 to support malaria prevention for the year 2019.
The Acting Managing Director, Mr Samuel Bonney Noi, made this announcement at Adiejie in the Tarkwa-Nsueam Municipality when he addressed a durbar to commemorate the world Malaria Day, which falls on 25 April every year.
The theme for this was: “Zero malaria starts with me” was the theme for this year’s celebration.
He explained that in June 2017 AngloGold Ashanti launched the Malaria Control Programme
The programme, which was launched in 2017, was the mines’ contribution to the global effort to achieve the 2020 milestone of the World Health Organization’s (WHO) Global Technical Strategy for Malaria 2016-2030, which targeted 40 percent reduction in malaria cases and death rates.
He said under the Malaria Control Programme, the company had distributed 20,000 insecticide treated nets to 16 communities, their employees and dependents as well as 4,500 students in three Senior High Schools in Tarkwa-Nsuaem Municipality.
Through the collaboration of the mines, their contractors have also distributed 2,600 insecticide treated bed nets to their employees and dependents, he added.
Mr. Noi said this interventions had yielded positive results as statistics indicated a downward trend in malaria cases in the Iduapriem sub-municipal health facilities within its host communities.
According to him, “statistics from Sam Jonah hospital indicated that malaria incidence rate had reduced from 18.4 percent per 100 employees in 2017 to 14.8 percent per 100 employees in 2018 accounted for close to 20 percent reduction in incidence”.
However, “Statistics from the Tarkwa-Nsuaem Municipal Health Directorate also revealed that malaria cases from the Iduapriem sub Municipal, which is made up of 80 percent of host communities, reduced from 2,088 in January to October in 2017 to 1,683 cases within the same period for 2018 representing 19.4 percent reduction in the total reported cases, he further explained.
Mr. Noi said according to the World Health Organization (WHO) every two minutes, a child dies of malaria.
He expressed worry and appealed to all stakeholders to put their hands on deck so that they could fight the menace.
The Municipal Health Director, Mr. Emmanuel Affelkum mentioned that malaria was the second leading disease in the Tarkwa-Nsueam municipality, stressing that, in 2018 a total of 46,568 people had malaria,
Out of this figure, he said, 3,664 were hospitalized, which included 1,352 children.
Mr. Affelkum recalled that though his outfit recorded five deaths in 2017, there was no death in 2018.
He expressed appreciation to AAI Gold Mines for their assistance and appealed to the citizenry to sleep in treated bed nets to enable them maintain this achievement.
In an address, the Apinto Gyasehene who doubles as the malaria ambassador, Nana Dr. Adarkwa Bediako III, announced that as from next year, they would introduce the best anti-malaria community award.
He said for any community that would win the ward, they would consider its cleanliness and the number of malaria cases they would report.
The Apinto Gyasehene pointed out that the objective of the programme was to ensure that their citizens were healthy.
Free health screening was also organised for residents of Adiejie and its neighbouring communities.
Tarkwa Senior High School won the 2019 malaria quiz competition for Senior High Schools.