Kalumbila Minerals Limited (KML) has injected a sum of K651, 550 in the Indoor Residual Spraying (IRS) programme in Kalumbila district of North-western province.
KML Public Relations Coordinator, Mirriam Harmon says KML has supported the programme in order to ensure people’s homes are sprayed and protected from malaria transmitting mosquitoes.
Ms Harmon stated that KML recognises IRS as an effective tool for eliminating malaria in communities due to its preventive nature, adding that IRS has remained the mainstay of malaria prevention intervention.
ZANIS reports that Ms Harmon was speaking during the launch of the IRS programme at Holy Family clinic in Mumbezhi area.
Ms Harmon disclosed that IRS has been credited with a marked reduction in malaria cases among employees and community members adding that the mining firm has gained production man hours that could have been lost due to malaria illness.
“The evidence of substantial impact of current interventions point to the fact that malaria elimination is possible,” she said.
She appealed to other stakeholders to take part and embrace the malaria interventions in order to end malaria for good.
And Kalumbila district commissioner Robinson Kalota said the main purpose of the IRS programme is to meet the needs of effective malaria prevention and vector control in malaria prone areas of the district.
In a speech read on his behalf by District Administrative officer Frank Siatwinda, Mr Kalota narrated that malaria is still the top cause of morbidity and mortality in the district, adding that epidemiologically, malaria has posed a serious problem in the district despite other great interventions such as Insecticide Treated Nets (ITN) distribution and prompt treatment of malaria cases.
“In 2018, the district recorded the incidence of malaria at 777 out of 1000 population and 11 out of 1000 mortality was recorded despite other interventions in place.
Morbidity and mortality has been high especially in children under five years.
He however said, abuse of ITNs such as using them for fishing and garden fencing is a huge challenge in the fight against malaria.
“The Ministry of Health and Kalumbila mine have continued to work tirelessly to fight malaria in the district. It is my sincere hope that these interventions will enable us to contribute to the achievement of eliminating malaria by 2021,” he said.
Meanwhile, District Health Director, Chiluba Kabalika appreciated KML for making the IRS initiative possible through their support.
In a speech delivered for her by Health Information Officer Florence Kabindo, Dr Kabalika appealed to traditional leaders to help disseminate information on IRS and the importance of using mosquito nets.