In the World Health Organization’s recently published World Malaria Report 2010, Rwanda in Central Africa emerged as one country where cases of the disease have increased, in contrast to reductions reported in several other nations. However, the malaria situation may better than the WHO figures indicate.
Malaria researcher Dr Corine Karema has pointed out that WHO’s report uses data from 2009, a year in which Rwanda experienced problems that led to delays in the distribution of insecticide-treated bednets. Since then much had been achieved, particularly with regard to net distribution and indoor residual insecticide spraying.
Dr Karema said that malaria cases in August 2010 were 40% down on the figure for August 2009. She said that the situation demonstrated the need for monthly monitoring of surveillance data, to demonstrate disease trends. In most African countries, monitoring systems would have to be strengthened to make this possible.
Dr Karema is Director of TRAC Plus, founded in 2007 to serve as a national centre for infectious diseases control and prevention in Rwanda.
More details available from allAfrica.com.