Dec 2011

Ward off the malaria bug

Know your Minister of Health

Summer usually sees hot conditions accompanied by rains in South Africa’s sub- tropical areas such as along the coast and parts of Mpumalanga. These rains become the breeding grounds for mosquitoes.

Some of these mosquitoes such as the Anopheles are carriers of the deadly disease called malaria. This is spread when a victim has been bitten by this kind of mosquito.

Malaria kills more than a million people a year, most of them in Africa. Around one out of every four childhood deaths in Africa is caused by malaria. To create public awareness of this killer disease and to encourage communities to participate in malaria control programmes, countries of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) held a week-long SADC Malaria Week in early November.

Malaria areas

Malaria areas in South Africa are found in northern KwaZulu-Natal, Limpopo and the eastern areas of Mpumalanga.

You can prevent being bitten by malaria mosquitos by:

  • wearing long-sleeved clothing and long trousers from dusk until dawn when you are outside
  • covering exposed areas of the body with mosquito repellent lotions or sprays
  • using mosquito coils, electric air repellents and insect sprays to kill or chase off the insects
  • sleeping under mosquito nets
  • staying in places that have mosquito screening on doors and windows.
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