Posts tagged malaria

"The journey is stunning…with the rains come lush green countryside, spontaneous lakes and beautiful migrating birds. And a hair-raising ride in a narrow boat loaded with all our malaria drugs and kits. The road is somewhere under several feet of water." —An epidemiologist helps fight a dangerous and unexpected malaria outbreak in Chad.

"The journey is stunning…with the rains come lush green countryside, spontaneous lakes and beautiful migrating birds. And a hair-raising ride in a narrow boat loaded with all our malaria drugs and kits. The road is somewhere under several feet of water." —An epidemiologist helps fight a dangerous and unexpected malaria outbreak in Chad.

As negotiations for the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) Agreement move to Malaysia this week, Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) urges negotiating countries to remove terms that could block people from accessing affordable medicines, choke off production of generic medicines, and constrain the ability of governments to pass laws in the interest of public health. Read more - http://bit.ly/15yjz3j

Photo by Ton Koene
Women wait with their children at an MSF mobile clinic in northwestern Central African Republic. A coup d’etat in March drove out most health workers and the clinics were looted; leaving people with no access to medical care during malaria season. http://bit.ly/186hHon

Photo by Ton Koene

Women wait with their children at an MSF mobile clinic in northwestern Central African Republic. A coup d’etat in March drove out most health workers and the clinics were looted; leaving people with no access to medical care during malaria season. http://bit.ly/186hHon

Photo by Ton Koene
The upheaval in Central African Republic has meant HIV treatment interruptions and mounting medical needs. Meanwhile, health workers flee with their families to safety and the malaria season starts. MSF tries to respond to this ‘crisis on top of a crisis’.” 
Read more - http://www.doctorswithoutborders.org/news/article.cfm?id=6804

Photo by Ton Koene

The upheaval in Central African Republic has meant HIV treatment interruptions and mounting medical needs. Meanwhile, health workers flee with their families to safety and the malaria season starts. MSF tries to respond to this ‘crisis on top of a crisis’.” 

Read more - http://www.doctorswithoutborders.org/news/article.cfm?id=6804

Meet 2-Year-Old Nyota, a Malaria Survivor in Congo

When she saw that her two-year-old daughter was ill, Nyota’s mother brought her to the MSF clinic in Nyasi, Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), where she was diagnosed with and treated for malaria. Malaria is the leading cause of illness and death in DRC. Last year, MSF treated half a million people in DRC suffering from the deadly disease.

2am “Oncall, oncall for ICU – we have one child yes, they are convulsions…” I jolt into wakefulness and am out of my bed and running over to the hospital as fast as I can go telling the nurses to prepare IV diazepam down the radio as I go. This could be anything, but always think worst case scenario… I arrive on the ward and yes, this is actual convulsions, a four-year-old with cerebral malaria.
MSF nurse Emma writes about the of variety people she treats when on-call in South Sudan. Please leave your comments for Emma on her blog. 
Photo: In the Madaoua and Bouza districts of Niger, there were an average of seven deaths for every 10,000 children every day last year. More than half of the deaths were due to malaria. © Juan-Carlos Tomasi
A Vicious Cycle in Sahel
Malaria and malnutrition are closely related. This is played out dramatically in Africa’s Sahel region during the “hunger gap” months. Food stocks run low and new crops are not ready for harvest, so malnutrition is at its peak; meanwhile, the rainy season, when mosquitoes breed, is in full swing. The diseases combine in a vicious circle: malnourished children with weak immune systems can’t fight diseases including malaria; children sick with malaria are more likely to become dangerously malnourished.

Photo: In the Madaoua and Bouza districts of Niger, there were an average of seven deaths for every 10,000 children every day last year. More than half of the deaths were due to malaria. © Juan-Carlos Tomasi

A Vicious Cycle in Sahel

Malaria and malnutrition are closely related. This is played out dramatically in Africa’s Sahel region during the “hunger gap” months. Food stocks run low and new crops are not ready for harvest, so malnutrition is at its peak; meanwhile, the rainy season, when mosquitoes breed, is in full swing. The diseases combine in a vicious circle: malnourished children with weak immune systems can’t fight diseases including malaria; children sick with malaria are more likely to become dangerously malnourished.

Photo: A child is tested for malaria in Orientale Province. DRC 2012 © Aurelie Lachant/MSF
DRC: Urgent Action Needed to Prevent Malaria Deaths in Orientale Province
An upsurge in malaria is likely to have serious consequences for people in Orientale Province in Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) unless immediate action is taken. “Too many health centers lack the supplies necessary for coping with a new outbreak, and this is completely unacceptable,” said Dr. Narcisse Wega, MSF emergency coordinator.

Photo: A child is tested for malaria in Orientale Province. DRC 2012 © Aurelie Lachant/MSF

DRC: Urgent Action Needed to Prevent Malaria Deaths in Orientale Province

An upsurge in malaria is likely to have serious consequences for people in Orientale Province in Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) unless immediate action is taken. “Too many health centers lack the supplies necessary for coping with a new outbreak, and this is completely unacceptable,” said Dr. Narcisse Wega, MSF emergency coordinator.

MSF in Mali: “We Will Not Abandon Our Patients Now”
In the town of Gao, in conflict-riven northern Mali, an average of 120 patients make their way to the MSF Wabaria and Sossokoira health centers each day. Even though the rainy season is over, 70 percent come with malaria, a potentially fatal parasitic disease that leaves sufferers exhausted from high fevers and uncontrollable shivers. Despite the war, it is malaria that the MSF medical teams in the region are battling most fiercely. It remains the leading cause of death in the country, and it is particularly dangerous for children under the age of five.
“Although there is a hospital and 10 health centers in and around Gao town, this is for a population of 400,000, and we realized that some people still had no access to medical care. Our patients tell us that all they hope for is peace. And we are with them; we stayed here throughout the air strikes, we will not abandon our patients now. We hope that the health system will develop and eventually replace us. But until then, we will stay and ensure that the people of Gao and Ansongo continue to have access to quality and free health care,” says Dr. Jose Bafoa, MSF’s medical team leader in Gao. 

MSF in Mali: “We Will Not Abandon Our Patients Now”

In the town of Gao, in conflict-riven northern Mali, an average of 120 patients make their way to the MSF Wabaria and Sossokoira health centers each day. Even though the rainy season is over, 70 percent come with malaria, a potentially fatal parasitic disease that leaves sufferers exhausted from high fevers and uncontrollable shivers. Despite the war, it is malaria that the MSF medical teams in the region are battling most fiercely. It remains the leading cause of death in the country, and it is particularly dangerous for children under the age of five.

“Although there is a hospital and 10 health centers in and around Gao town, this is for a population of 400,000, and we realized that some people still had no access to medical care. Our patients tell us that all they hope for is peace. And we are with them; we stayed here throughout the air strikes, we will not abandon our patients now. We hope that the health system will develop and eventually replace us. But until then, we will stay and ensure that the people of Gao and Ansongo continue to have access to quality and free health care,” says Dr. Jose Bafoa, MSF’s medical team leader in Gao. 

Photo: Jérémie, an MSF community health agent, performs a rapid diagnostic test for malaria on a child with fever. Guinea 2013 © Philippe Latour/MSF
A Community Comes Together to Fight Malaria in Guinea
In Guinea, Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) has set up a network of community health agents as part of its strategy to tackle malaria. These volunteers are committed to working for the well-being of their communities.
André Millimouno is a builder by trade, but in September 2010 this cheerful 44-year-old gave up his job to become a community health agent in the area MSF supports. He is part of a team of 47 agents who help manage malaria in their communities in Guéckédou, in Guinea’s remote Guinée Forestière region.
This morning, André has come to the village of Kat-Kama, located 15 kilometers [nine miles] from the nearest health post. In the small central square, a crowd of villagers has gathered under a tree. They know that André has come to give them information about malaria, carry out tests, and treat those suffering from the disease. His t-shirt bears a simple message: “Community health agents are committed to fighting malaria.”

Photo: Jérémie, an MSF community health agent, performs a rapid diagnostic test for malaria on a child with fever. Guinea 2013 © Philippe Latour/MSF

A Community Comes Together to Fight Malaria in Guinea

In Guinea, Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) has set up a network of community health agents as part of its strategy to tackle malaria. These volunteers are committed to working for the well-being of their communities.

André Millimouno is a builder by trade, but in September 2010 this cheerful 44-year-old gave up his job to become a community health agent in the area MSF supports. He is part of a team of 47 agents who help manage malaria in their communities in Guéckédou, in Guinea’s remote Guinée Forestière region.

This morning, André has come to the village of Kat-Kama, located 15 kilometers [nine miles] from the nearest health post. In the small central square, a crowd of villagers has gathered under a tree. They know that André has come to give them information about malaria, carry out tests, and treat those suffering from the disease. His t-shirt bears a simple message: “Community health agents are committed to fighting malaria.”

With this clinic we definitely saved lives. People were in real difficulties in the bush: not enough food, mosquitoes biting people, everyone drinking very bad water. Our clinic was not perfect, but it was better than nothing, and we saved lives.

Malaria: Offering Children a Chance

For the first time, MSF is employing seasonal malaria chemoprevention (SMC) in Chad and Mali. 170,000 children aged between three months and five years received anti-malaria medicines during the peak transmission season. This treatment, recommended by the World Health Organization, will not eradicate malaria definitively. But in countries like Chad and Mali, where malaria is the first cause of infant and child mortality, it does have an important role to play in emergency situations.

Photo: MSF provided medical assistance and distributed aid kits to populations in need after severe flooding. Nigeria 2012 © MSF
MSF Responds to Floods in Nigeria
After severe floods hit eastern Nigeria in September, MSF provided medical assistance and distributed aid kits to populations in need.
Among the affected population, MSF staff found high rates of malaria, particularly in the Mayorenewo area, where more than 80 percent of patients tested positive. Malaria is transmitted by infected mosquitoes and can be fatal if it is not treated. In an effort to reduce the number of mosquitoes and avoid a spike in malaria cases, MSF teams exercised vector control by spraying breeding grounds and distributed mosquito nets to internally displaced families.
“Malaria is already endemic in the region but, due to the flow of people to this area, local health centers were unable to cope with the increased amount of cases,” said Terri Morris, MSF head of mission in Nigeria. “Also, in remote villages and settlements there were almost no functioning health services. Patches of standing water from the floods were a perfect breeding ground for mosquito larvae, and the situation was worsened by the overcrowding caused by the displacements. In some cases 150 people were sharing a house designed for a family of 20, all without mosquito nets.”

Photo: MSF provided medical assistance and distributed aid kits to populations in need after severe flooding. Nigeria 2012 © MSF

MSF Responds to Floods in Nigeria

After severe floods hit eastern Nigeria in September, MSF provided medical assistance and distributed aid kits to populations in need.

Among the affected population, MSF staff found high rates of malaria, particularly in the Mayorenewo area, where more than 80 percent of patients tested positive. Malaria is transmitted by infected mosquitoes and can be fatal if it is not treated. In an effort to reduce the number of mosquitoes and avoid a spike in malaria cases, MSF teams exercised vector control by spraying breeding grounds and distributed mosquito nets to internally displaced families.

“Malaria is already endemic in the region but, due to the flow of people to this area, local health centers were unable to cope with the increased amount of cases,” said Terri Morris, MSF head of mission in Nigeria. “Also, in remote villages and settlements there were almost no functioning health services. Patches of standing water from the floods were a perfect breeding ground for mosquito larvae, and the situation was worsened by the overcrowding caused by the displacements. In some cases 150 people were sharing a house designed for a family of 20, all without mosquito nets.”

Every year, our annual report provides us with the opportunity to explain to our supporters how we have allocated your generous donations and to give you details about the lifesaving programs we’re running in clinics, hospitals, and feeding centers all across the globe. 

In short, it gives us the opportunity to be accountable to the people who make our work possible.

View our 2011 annual report.

Photo: Mothers and children queue to receive food as part of treatment in Guidan Roumdji, where MSF treats malnutrition and malaria. Niger 2012 © Tanya Bindra
Op-Ed: How to Start a Child Survival Epidemic
“Running your infant to the pediatrician for a well-baby check up and shots may seem like just another chore. Who do you know who ever had measles? Many parents wonder if all those shots are really necessary in the first place. But last week, mothers, nurses, and doctors in Niger reminded me just how powerful and important these simple gestures are.”
How can improving childhood survival rates in Niger spread to a child survival epidemic? MSF pediatrician, Susan Shephered, discusses her work in the field and strategies to reduce childhood mortality worldwide. 
This article was originally published on the Huffington Post.

Photo: Mothers and children queue to receive food as part of treatment in Guidan Roumdji, where MSF treats malnutrition and malaria. Niger 2012 © Tanya Bindra

Op-Ed: How to Start a Child Survival Epidemic

Running your infant to the pediatrician for a well-baby check up and shots may seem like just another chore. Who do you know who ever had measles? Many parents wonder if all those shots are really necessary in the first place. But last week, mothers, nurses, and doctors in Niger reminded me just how powerful and important these simple gestures are.”

How can improving childhood survival rates in Niger spread to a child survival epidemic? MSF pediatrician, Susan Shephered, discusses her work in the field and strategies to reduce childhood mortality worldwide. 

This article was originally published on the Huffington Post.