First Lady Rebecca Akufo-Addo says she is working with stakeholders to ensure girls are protected from the effects of malaria.

As the world celebrates the International Day of the Girl Child, Mrs Akufo-Addo who is also the Chairperson of the Infanta Malaria Foundation noted that malaria has been identified as among the top killers of adolescent girls, a situation which can be curtailed if proper attention is given to them.

“Globally, malaria is among the top killers of adolescent girls and contributed to 7.4% of deaths among this population. Malaria is a serious health risk during pregnancy, especially during the first pregnancy, which for many in malaria-endemic countries occurs during adolescence.

“This is because during pregnancy the body undergoes physiological changes, which increases susceptibility to malaria. Coupled with other challenges young girls face such as malnutrition, malaria causes anaemia, a life-threatening condition for both the mother and newborn, in which the body is depleted of healthy red blood cells. Surviving newborns may be severely underweight, and this could delay physical and mental development,” she stated.

The First Lady also highlighted that it is time for the country to combat malaria ones and for all adding that the consequenses of malaria can be devasting.

She then gave the assurance that least three doses of quality-assured antimalarial drugs would be given to pregnant girls and women, and their newborns, to protect them from malaria.

“This advocacy campaign urges all stakeholders, including leaders and health policymakers across Africa, to prioritize that every pregnant woman and girl receives at least three doses of quality-assured antimalarial (sulfadoxine-pyrimethamine, or SP), used as the intermittent preventive treatment of malaria in pregnancy (IPTp).”