For Immediate Release
For Immediate Release
April 11, 2014
USAID Ghana Launches the 2014 Indoor Residual Spraying Program to Fight Malaria
West Mamprusi, Ghana— Dr. Philip Ricks, of the US Presidential Malaria Initiative (PMI) to USAID’s Ghana Mission, stakeholders from the National Malaria Control Programme (NMCP), and local health authorities kicked off the seventh annual Indoor Residual Spraying (IRS) campaign today. The IRS campaign will spray more than 216,000 structures during the 2014 campaign season, starting in the Bunkpurugu-Yunyoo, East Mamprusi, Savelugu-Nanton, and West Mamprusi districts in northern Ghana, protecting nearly 570,000 residents from malaria.
Ghana’s entire population of 25.2 million is at risk of malaria. According to Ghana Health Service health facility data, malaria is the number one cause of morbidity, accounting for about 38 percent of all outpatient illnesses, 36 percent of all admissions, and 33 percent of all deaths in children under five years. Between 3.1 and 3.5 million cases of clinical malaria are reported in public health facilities each year, of which 900,000 cases are in children under five years. IRS and other malaria control initiatives have made remarkable gains in the fight against malaria. IRS is the application of insecticide to the interior walls and eaves of homes, killing mosquitoes that carry the malaria parasite, thereby preventing the transmission of malaria.
The IRS campaign is funded by the United States President’s Malaria Initiative (PMI) through USAID and implemented by the Africa Indoor Residual Spraying (AIRS) project led by Abt Associates (USAID/AIRS). PMI was launched in Ghana in December 2007, led by USAID and implemented with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control. Since then, substantial progress has been made delivering malaria prevention treatment and mortality rates for children under five in Ghana have decreased by 26%, according to the Malaria Indicator Survey. IRS is a core component of Ghana’s current National Malaria Control Strategy and Ghana’s Strategic Plan for Malaria Control 2008-2015, with the goal to protect one-third of Ghana’s districts by 2015.
USAID/AIRS, in partnership with NMCP and community leaders, educate communities about the benefits of indoor spraying through community meetings, radio call-in programs, and household visits. Communication is critical to malaria prevention. IRS is most effective at preventing malaria when at least 80% of households are sprayed, according to the World Health Organization. USAID/AIRS successfully sprayed 91% of the structures in its targeted areas in Ghana in 2013, protecting 534,060 people, including 102,115 children under the age of five and 11,617 pregnant women. USAID/AIRS also hires hundreds of local staff to spray homes and supervise seasonal workers. So far this year, USAID/AIRS trained approximately 800 local workers. In 2013, PMI provided $27 million to support Malaria control in Ghana.
Africa Indoor Residual Spraying
The Africa Indoor Residual Spraying project (AIRS) is protecting millions of people from malaria by leading indoor residual spraying in 13 countries in Africa. Learn more about PMI at www.pmi.gov and AIRS at www.africairs.net.
Last updated: November 18, 2014