Malaria Contacts

NATIONAL CONTACTS
Malaria
Dr D Moonasar
Office: 395 8062
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Secretary: Malaria Ms R Lombard
Office: 395 8062
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Deputy-Director: Malaria
Dr EA Misiani
Office: 012 395-8064
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Assistant-Director: Malaria
Ms MB Shandukani
Office: 012 395-9046
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PROVINCIAL CONTACTS

LIMPOPO

Mr P Kruger: Senior Manager: Malaria Control
Office: 015 307-3737
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Malaria Prevention

TRAVELLING INSIDE SOUTH AFRICA

Malaria is a parasitic disease transmitted by the female Anopheles mosquito. It has plagued mankind for centuries and remains a risk today, particularly in parts of Africa, Asia and Latin America. Malaria is both preventable and curable, but if not diagnosed and treated early it can also be fatal. The map below highlights the malarial areas in South Africa according to the potential risk. The South African Department of Health has maintained a highly effective malaria control programme for over 60 years. Although the malaria risks are real, Government is steadfastly implementing measures to prevent infection to humans and to treat this disease. A targeted mosquito control intervention i.e. Indoor Residual Spraying; and the distribution of highly effective drugs for malaria cases are some of the key malaria interventions used in South Africa.

If you are travelling to a malaria area:

  • Take an effective malaria prophylaxis. There are several effective preventive drugs. Consult your doctor or travel clinic for the best one for you;
  • Wear long trousers and long sleeve shirts between dusk and dawn. Anopheles mosquitoes tend to bite at night, hence precautionary measures should be taken especially at this time. Use mosquito repellents and sleep under an insecticide treated mosquito net to avoid mosquito bites;
  • Consult your doctor and request malaria test if you develop any flu-like symptoms during or after you have been in a malaria area. While the symptoms normally develop up to 2 weeks after the parasite has entered the body, symptoms of the disease can occur up to 6 months after you have left the malaria area, so never discount the possibility that you could have malaria when feeling ill;
  • Get treated immediately with effective antimalarial drugs if you test positive for malaria. If diagnosed and treated promptly the disease can be cured.
  • Remember malaria can be prevented, treated and cured.
  • Enjoy your travels to beautiful South Africa and have a safe and relaxing trip.

TRAVELLING OUTSIDE SOUTH AFRICA

If you are travelling to malarial areas both within and outside South Africa, you should take precautions to prevent the disease. You should also be aware of the symptoms of the disease and how to treat it. The symptoms of malaria are very similar to flu e.g. headache, fever, muscular and joint pains, sweating, shivering attacks, nausea, diarrhea and fatigue. Symptoms can still occur up to six months after leaving a malaria risk area. Please refer to the WHO’s Global Malaria Programme for malaria travel advice outside of South Africa, and refer to the map below.

If you are travelling to a malaria area:

    • Take an effective malaria prophylaxis. There are several effective preventive drugs. Consult your doctor or travel clinic for the best one for you;
    • Wear long trousers and long sleeve shirts between dusk and dawn. Anopheles mosquitoes tend to bite in the nighttime;
    • Use mosquito repellents and sleep under an insecticide treated mosquito net to avoid mosquito bites;
    • Consult your doctor and request a malaria test if you develop any flu-like symptoms during or after you have been in a malaria area. While the symptoms normally develop up to 2 weeks after the parasite has entered the body, symptoms of the disease can occur up to 6 months after you have left the malaria area, so never discount the possibility that you could have malaria when feeling ill;
    • Get treated immediately with effective antimalarial drugs if you test positive for malaria. If diagnosed and treated promptly the disease can be cured.

WHO: Countries at risk of malaria transmission (2011)

PREVENTION IS BETTER THAN CURE

Going somewhere? Know whether there is a risk of getting malaria in the area you are visiting. Malaria is one of the most serious tropical diseases and can be deadly if not detected and treated at an early stage.

    • Take precautionary measures to prevent mosquito bites in all risk areas.
    • If recommended, take appropriate medication as directed.
    • Seek immediate medical attention if you have any “flu-like” symptoms for up to six months after leaving a malaria area.

Measures to avoid mosquito bites

      • Allow your house to be sprayed if you are residing in a malaria risk area.
      • Wear long sleeved clothing when going out at night.
      • Apply an insect repellant containing DEET to exposed skin at night.
      • Sleep under a mosquito-proof bed net treated with an approved insecticide.
      • Spray inside your house with an insecticide spray after closing windows and doors.

Take your medicines correctly

        • Take only the medicines for preventing malaria that have been recommended by a health professional.
        • Start before entering the malaria risk area and continue as prescribed by a health professional.

Early symptoms of malaria

  • Fever
  • Headache
  • Chills
 

Malaria Introduction

At least 3.2 billion of the world's people are still at risk of contracting malaria, and an estimated 350-500 million clinical malaria cases occur annually. More than 600,000 malaria deaths occur in Africa and most are children under 5 years of age. Around 60% of these clinical cases, and about 80% of malaria deaths, occur in sub-Saharan Africa. Malaria constitutes a major barrier to social and economic development in the region.

In South Africa, malaria is mainly transmitted along the border areas.  Some parts of South Africa’s nine provinces (Limpopo, Mpumalanga and KwaZulu-Natal) are endemic for malaria, and 10% of the population (approximately 4.9 million persons) is at risk of contracting the disease.  Malaria transmission in South Africa is seasonal, with malaria cases starting to rise in October, peaking in January and February, and waning towards May.

The South African government

is working to eliminate malaria.Malaria elimination involves a systematic process of developing strategies and ensuring their robust implementation. The first phase of elimination commenced with a programme review, the development of an elimination strategy, an implementation plan, and a monitoring and evaluation plan. The second phase, currently underway, will involve the robust implementation of the interventions detailed in the strategic plan, and monitoring its progress towards achieving the goal of malaria elimination.

Malaria is a preventable and curable disease.If not diagnosed and treated early, it can also be fatal. Preventative and curative advice can be found under Malaria Prevention & Treatment Advice

 

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