The Northern Region recorded a total of 45 malaria deaths in 2021, representing less than 1 percent of cases.

The data showed 28 infant mortalities representing 0.12 percent whiles 17 deaths occurred in adults representing 0.09.

The region also recorded 94 percent suspected malaria cases out of which 53 were confirmed.

These statistic were made known by a representative of the Regional Health Directorate Francis Kpadonu, at a stakeholder’s engagement on the 2022 Seasonal Malaria Chemoprevention (SMC) implementation.

The engagement was to sensitize the public with the objective to improve upon the gains made last year.

He said the percentage of patients who reported at OPDs with malaria cases was 26.45 percent as compared to the 32.67 percent recorded in 2017.

He mentioned the distribution of the Insecticide Treatment Nets (ITNs) and the Intermittent preventive treatment (IPTs) among others as some of the interventions that were implemented last year.

Francis Kpadonu said about 84 percent of the population received the ITNs in the region.

He added that 493, 529 eligible children were administered with the SMC doses during its implementation.

The National Malaria Control Data Manager, Ihsan Issaka said the SMC is been implemented in 7 regions across the country.

He said the the regions comprised the 5 regions of the north, Oti and Bono regions.

He said the regions were selected for the implementation because of the rain pattern in these regions.

According to him the southern sector has prolonged rain patterns but the SMC is done within 3-4 months during the rainy season, hence the implementation in these 7 regions.

He said the SMC is been administered to children aged 3 months to 59 months, adding that the doses are 90 percent efficacious.

He said the SMC is administered on a 24 hourly basis for three consecutive days, encouraging parents to avail their children for the vaccines.

Ihsan Issaka emphasized that the SMC is not good for children with underlying illness including allergies.

The manager outlined some of the challenges faced by the directorate in the implementation of the SMC.

He mentioned the reluctance of mothers to make known, the underlying conditions of their children to health personnels.

Mr Issaka also said that even though mothers were taken through the procedures of administering the dose, some mothers still fail to abide by the rules, thereby causing more harm to their children.

The Northern Region’s Vector Control Officer of Zoomlion Ghana limited, Abdulai Abdul-Aziz Yelsuma said Zoomlion is supporting the directorate with other interventions to help curb malaria infections.