Livingstone District is targeting over 180,000 residents in the third round of the Mass Drug Administration (MDA) exercise, for Elephantiasis which is set to commence on January 10, 2019.

The district is set to commence the exercise on the disease that is mostly characterised by the thickening of the skin and underlying tissues, especially in the limbs and male genitals.

Acting Livingstone District Senior Environmental Health Officer, Rose Banda said the district health office was targeting 180,011 residents from the ages of two years and expected 100 percent coverage to protect the community from the disease.

Ms Banda explained that the only people exempted from taking the medication in the targeted age group, were pregnant women.

Speaking during a stakeholders’ meeting in Livingstone Ms Banda said the MDA exercise will run from January 10, 2019 to January 14, 2019.

Ms Banda has urged Livingstone residents to cooperate with the authority by taking the medication, once administered.

And Livingstone District Health Director Tino Maliselo appealed to residents not to shun the preventive drugs based on rumours and myths circulating in communities.

Dr Maliselo said inspite of a few side effects, such as nausea, dizziness and slight abdominal pains, the medication was safe to take.

Meanwhile, Acting Livingstone District Commissioner Harriet Kawina says the district faced numerous challenges, during the first round of MDA for Elephantiasis since most people were refusing the drugs.

Ms Kawina however, noted that most challenges were addressed during the second round which recorded 98 percent coverage; but called for massive sensitization of the third round to ensure the district attained 100 percent coverage.

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