Nigerian Health Minister Calls For Result-Oriented Approach In Fight Against Mosquitoes

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Inaugurates Advisory, Ministerial Task Force

— Mediaage NG News – ABUJA, Nigeria (Monday 1st July, 2024)

The Nigerian Health and Social Welfare Minister has described mosquitoe and its threat as a challenge to the country and said that there must be “a paradigm shift from the standard approach to a more proactive and result-oriented method of defeating this disease”.

Prof. Muhammad Ali Pate revealed this while inaugurating an Advisory Board on Malaria Elimination in Nigeria (AMEN) and the Ministerial Task Force on Malaria Elimination in Nigeria.

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Alluding that it’s a significant step to accelerate progress towards malaria elimination, the Minister said the disease poses a significant burden on Nigeria in terms of mortality, morbidity, lost work hours, out-of-pocket expenses, and government investments in treatments and interventions.

“On this premise, we invited academics, malaria programme experts, development partners, private sectors, civil societies, business enthusiasts, policymakers as well as the political class to a roundtable discussion to rethink the country’s approaches and strategic views on malaria, which culminated to the setting up of the Advisory for Malaria Elimination in Nigeria (AMEN), among other things agendas, and the Ministerial Task Force on Malaria in Nigeria, Prof. Pate said on Monday in the country’s capital, Abuja

“They will offer evidence-based advisory services and meet regularly to review program evidence and provide guidance on aligning with best practices for malaria elimination.

“They will also collaborate with the CMH&SW and HMSH to review implementation when necessary. The team will meet every 6 months (twice a year)”, he added.

The Advisory on Malaria Elimination in Nigeria (AMEN) is headed by Emeritus Prof. Rose Leke University of Yaoundé, Cameroun. Other members included Prof. Dyann Wirth, of the Harvard School of Public Health, Dr. Soji Adeyi President, of Resilience Health System, Prof. Ibrahim Abubakar, University College, London, and Prof. Peter Piot, of the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine.

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Prof. Pate explained that the Ministerial Task Force will consist of Nigerian based stakeholders from various sectors with extensive knowledge of malaria implementation in the country.

“They will ensure that the advice and recommendations from AMEN are carefully considered, analysed, and implemented. The Malaria Taskforce will collaborate with the Federal Ministry of Health, development partners, donor agencies, and the AMEN as needed.

“The task force will contribute to the overall goal of the National Malaria Elimination Program (NMEP) and work to reduce the incidence of malaria. It will also aim to improve the impact of malaria interventions through coordinated efforts in prevention, diagnosis, treatment, and awareness creation”, he stayed.

The Ministerial Taskforce is co-chaired by the Coordinating Minister of Health and Social Welfare and the Minister of State for Health and Social Welfare, while the Chairman of the Malaria Technical Working Group in Nigeria, will serve as the Vice Chairman.

Other members of the group include the Permanent Secretary, Director, Public Health, representatives of WHO, Secretary, Country Coordinating Mechanism, GF, Representatives of the Civil Society Organizations Secretary, Pharmaceutical Manufacturers Group of Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (PMG, MAN), Strategic Adviser to the Hon. Ministers of Health on Malaria, Secretary of the Governors’ Forum and Technical Adviser to the Coordinating Minister on ATM.

The National Coordinator of the National Malaria Elimination Programme will serve as the Secretary.

The team will meet every 6 to 8 weeks, as well as, in other scheduled meetings. Membership of the task force will be reviewed biennially for renewal or replacement to achieve optimum results, according to the Minister.

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