Materia Medica Malaysiana

August 1, 2008

All-out fight against malaria

Filed under: Uncategorized — malaysianmedicine @ 3:28 pm

Star: MIRI: Sarawak health authorities and the disaster relief committee have started an all-out campaign against malaria as the disease spreads beyond the Bario highlands of northern Sarawak.
Sarawak deputy Chief Minister Tan Sri Dr George Chan Hong Nam, who is the committee chairman, said that the latest information indicated that the number of malaria cases had skyrocketed and spread to a settlement called Long Jikitan, located outside the highlands.
He said more intensive and extensive anti-malarial fogging would be carried out in the affected zones, adding that health teams had been sent to Bario to carry out early detection as a preventive measure.“House-to-house insecticide spraying is being carried out as well. The most effective means to check the spread is through the destruction of the mosquito-carriers,” he said.
Initially, two Penan settlements in the Bario highlands, Arur Dalan and Semirian, were infected.
He said the whole state had recorded 894 positive cases from January until July 19 while the Bario region had 139 so far.
“The multiplication of the malaria virus-carriers seems to be very fast this year,” Dr Chan said yesterday.
The outbreak became pronounced over the past week following a sudden rise in the number of Penans hospitalised with malaria-related symptoms.
Dr Chan said Sarawak had the necessary expertise and experience to deal with the disease even if it worsened.
Ten infected natives from Long Jikitan were referred to Miri Hospital after they were found to have been infected but their condition was not serious.
A pregnant mother was among those admitted for malaria in Marudi Hospital, while families were treated en masse at the Bario health clinic.
The state health and medical services department has deployed a team of medical specialists from Kuching to Bario to study the malaria infections there.

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