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UK Government strengthens Uganda’s response to fight malaria

British High Commissioner Peter West shares remarks at the launch of the target malaria insectary as the UK government partners with Uganda in the fight. (PHOTO/PML Daily)

KAMPALA – The UK Government is supporting the Government of Uganda’s response to fight malaria among the most vulnerable, particularly women and children.

Malaria figures in Uganda are high; with 2017 Ministry of Health statistics showing the disease still claims about 14 children daily and about 80,000 lives every year, equivalent to an average of 200 people every day – enough to fill 14 taxi vans that seat 14 passengers each.

The five-year support worth UGX 206b that started in 2018 and will end in 2022, is channelled through the United Nations Children’s Fund-UNICEF and USAID.

The funding is supporting the reduction in malaria in 26 high burden districts and building national capacity to respond to the burden of malaria.

During the launch of the Target Malaria Insectary at the Uganda Virus Research Institute July 29, the British High Commissioner Peter West urged government to invest in new strategies end malaria.

“Investing in strategies to prevent and control malaria will save thousands of children from dying. Many families will be spared the unspeakable grief of losing a child,” he said.

“And those children will be able to contribute to building Uganda’s future. That in itself is a reason to support the fight against malaria, and the UK is proud to do so,” Mr West added.

Uganda is among the 10 high burden countries for malaria and accounts for an estimated 4 per cent and 3 per cent of the global number of cases and deaths respectively, despite positive trends realized over the past decade.

The WHO says that Malaria continues to kill and prevent people, especially children, from reaching their full health potential, thereby calling for more strengthened and concerted efforts and interventions to curb the disease.

The main priorities of the UKaid funding include – strengthening district health systems, including malaria epidemiological and entomological surveillance; strengthening capacity of districts in management of malaria interventions; improving access and uptake of malaria prevention interventions like increase in intermittent preventive treatment in pregnancy and increase in access and use of insecticide-treated mosquito nets and improving diagnosis and treatment of malaria in the public and private sectors and community level.

At the national level, the UKAid funding is geared towards strengthening the capacity of the National Malaria Control Programme and improvement of the quality and use of data.

About UNICEF

UNICEF promotes the rights and wellbeing of every child, in everything we do. Together with our partners, we work in 190 countries and territories to translate that commitment into practical action, focusing special effort on reaching the most vulnerable and excluded children, to the benefit of all children, everywhere.

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