KAMPALA, January 28 (Xinhua). The Ugandan Ministry of Health handed over 70,000 mosquito nets to the military on Tuesday for distribution in central parts of the east African country.
Diana Atwine, Permanent Minister of Health, handed over the long-lasting insecticide-treated mosquito nets to Major General Ambrose Musinguzi, chief of the Ugandan People’s Defense Forces (UPDF) medical service.
The nets will be distributed in the central districts of Luwero and Nakaseke as part of the week-long 39th anniversary of the establishment of the force.
“When you distribute the nets, make sure you make beneficiaries aware of the need and educate them to sleep under them, whether it’s the cold season or the hot season,” Atwine said.
“Sometimes we get reports that people don’t know how to hang the nets and take care of the nets as well. We hope you will raise awareness of these beneficiary communities,” she said.
According to Musinguzi, a total of 300 households will benefit from the donation from the ministry.
“The UPDF will also provide reports on malaria tests and treatments, vaccinations and health promotion,” said Musinguzi.
Jimmy Opigo, assistant health services commissioner for the National Malaria Control Division, said the Department of Health will launch the third universal coverage campaign that will distribute 27 million nets as of April.
According to the Ministry of Health, between 70,000 and 100,000 people die of malaria each year, mostly pregnant mothers and children.
The country has made remarkable progress in the fight against malaria. According to the Malaria Indicator Survey, the prevalence rate of disease has dropped from 19 percent to 9 percent over the past four years.
Progress has been attributed to the continuous distribution of mosquito nets, fall management, and spraying of debris indoors.