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Indoor residual spraying to kick off in September

By Vicky Wandawa

Added 21st July 2016 02:02 PM

The districts which include Kitgum, Amuru, Adaku, Apac, Gulu, Kole, Lamo, Nwoya, Oyam and Pader were selected based on their high prevailing rates of malaria cases.

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The districts which include Kitgum, Amuru, Adaku, Apac, Gulu, Kole, Lamo, Nwoya, Oyam and Pader were selected based on their high prevailing rates of malaria cases.

Indoor spraying to counter the malaria epidemic in Northern Uganda will kick off in 10 mosquito-infested districts, starting September.

According to a press release from Professor Anthony Mbonye, the acting director general at the ministry of health, the spraying is intended to protect at least 85% of the population from malaria by 2017.

The districts which include Kitgum, Amuru, Adaku, Apac, Gulu, Kole, Lamo, Nwoya, Oyam and Pader were selected based on their high prevailing rates of malaria cases.

Statistics from the Ministry of Health show that malaria is still the leading cause of death in Uganda, accounting for over 27% of deaths. The statistics also show that Uganda has the world's highest malaria incidence, with a rate of 478 cases per 1,000 population per year.

Uganda ranks as 6th among African countries with high malaria-related mortality rates.
Approximately $9m has been committed for the exercise, with funding from the government USAID and DFID.

“Indoor residual spraying is the application of a long lasting, residual insecticide to potential resting surfaces of mosquitos such as internal walls and ceilings of all houses or structures including domestic animal shelters where they may get into contact with the insecticide,” says Mbonye.

According to the press release, most mosquitoes enter houses during the night to feed on occupants and rest on the walls or roofs prior to and after feeding. With effective residual spray insecticide, the mosquitoes will pick up the lethal dose as they rest. IRS additionally controls other household pests such as bedbugs, cockroaches, houseflies, lice, fleas and others making it cost effective as they spend less treatment on related diseases.

The strategy however is being used in addition to other malaria prevention strategies such as the use of long lasting insecticide treated bed nets, treatment in pregnancy, epidemic preparedness and behaviour change communication among others.

It is hoped that by 2020, Uganda will have reduced annual malaria deaths to near zero.

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