a public health problem in Brazil and Angola Angola

O anopheles is the transmitter of the parasite plasmodium ovale in Africa, the cause of malaria, the disease that kills the most in Angola. Photo: RS National Center for Health Monitoring.

Brasília / Luanda – On May 11, the Brazilian Ministry of Health launched the National Malaria Elimination Plan with the aim of reducing the number of cases to less than 68,000 by 2025, reducing the number of deaths to zero by 2030 and to eliminate the disease in Brazil by 2035. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), despite the progress made in recent years in reducing malaria mortality, in 2020, 241 million cases of the disease were estimated in 85 countries, a record increase from 2019, when 227 million cases were reported.

According to the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO), malaria is a life-threatening disease caused by parasites that are transmitted to humans by the infected female mosquito. The disease can be prevented and cured. It prevails in tropical and semi-tropical countries. Also known as sezão, malaria, malaita, tertiary fever and quartan fever, the vector of the disease is anopheles (Anopheles), a mosquito-like mosquito that bites mainly at dusk and at night, recalls doctor Dráuzio Varela, who points out that of the more than a hundred types of plasmodium, the malaria parasite that can be highlighted in the case of Africa is the Plasmodium ovale.

Angola

In the country, the disease is the leading cause of death. According to data from the World Health Organization, published by DW, in 2020, 16,000 people died of malaria in Angola, according to the latest data available from the World Health Organization. In the world, it is the fifth country with the highest number of cases, with 8.2 million people infected. Health professionals say there are few drugs to treat the population, especially in pediatric wards.

what is malaria

Malaria is a disease caused by four different types of protozoa of the genus Plasmodium. Three of them are active in Brazil. Transmission occurs in two ways: through the bite of an infected mosquito or through the incorrect use and sharing of needles. The illness begins like the flu, with the first symptoms between nine and 14 days after infection. The main symptoms are high fever; Chills; Sweat; Intense muscle pain; Headache; Tachycardia; Fatigue; vomiting;

The treatment includes antimalarial drugs and can be done with free drugs and provided by the SUS (Sistema Único de Saúde). It is used to prevent the development of the parasite and the dose of the drug may vary depending on the severity of the disease, the species of the parasite and the age and weight of the patient.

In the city of Rio, the municipal government has reported that there is no local transmission of malaria in the city. All the recorded cases relate to people who have traveled to places where the disease is considered endemic, such as the states and countries of the Legal Amazon and the African continent. In 2021, there were nine confirmed cases of malaria in the municipality of Rio and, in 2022, eight cases.

The Department of Health (SMS-Rio) carries out epidemiological surveillance and offers diagnosis and treatment to all confirmed cases in the municipality, which are followed up in the primary care network or in hospital care, if necessary. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), in 2020 around 627,000 people died from malaria. Among them, 77% were children under the age of five.

The disease has socio-economic impacts, placing a heavy burden on the incomes of countries where it is endemic and requiring even greater efforts from local health services.

Countries with weak health systems have few resources to provide care to the population. The result is a vicious circle: the lack of structure prevents treatment and leads to disease incidence. The population weakened by these diseases cannot get out of poverty.

Com Rafaela Torres / DW

Wagner Sales – Content editor

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