Assessment of Malaria as a Public Health Problem in Finchaa Sugar Factory based on Clinical Records and Parasitological Surve

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Addis Ababa University


An assessment of malaria as a public health problem was conducted during the two peak malaria seasons of 2005/06 among the residents of Finchaa Sugar Factory (FSF), in eastern Wellega, western Ethiopia. The study was based on a cross-sectional survey for malaria prevalence and the use of retrospective clinical records from FSF Health Center. The study included determination of parasite rate, environmental and socio-economic factors associated with or contributing to the transmission of malaria. Retrospective clinical reports of FSF Health Center during the past five years showed that malaria was among the major infectious diseases constituting significant public health problem, accounting for over 30% average annual prevalence in the area. On the other hand, examination of thick and thin blood films from a random sample of 700 individuals from 7 villages of FSF revealed an infection prevalence of 1.43% in November 2005 and 3.86% in April/May 2006, which suggests that malaria prevalence in the area was moderate. Of the total 37 malaria positives on microscopy, 59.5% were age 15 years and above. The study detected focal variation of malaria prevalence with 6.95% in Village “E”; 3.84% in Kuyisa (non-FSF village) and Village “A”; 3.13% in Village ”D”; 1.47% in Village “B”; 1.43% in Village “C” and 0.8% in Agamsa (a residential quarter for permanent employees). The result from the KAPs survey revealed low awareness (16.3%) in the community towards malaria infection and its control techniques. Multiple factors such as favorable climate and topography, availability of year-round water via irrigation, environmental modifications for irrigated sugar cane plantation, huge influx of labor force from malaria endemic adjacent regions and lack of continued attention to malaria control measures appeared to be responsible for the continuous transmission of the disease in the area. Hence, vector control measures, by instituting a second round of residual insecticide application in the period March/April and other vector control measures such as the use of ITNs, must be instituted. Prevention of imported malaria and disease management via administration of free anti-malaria therapy to the seasonal laborers must be given adequate attention. Key words: Ethiopia, Finchaa Sugar Factory, Irrigation, Malaria, Plasmodium falciparum, Plasmodium vivax, Public health



Ethiopia Finchaa Sugar Factory, Irrigation, Malaria, Plasmodium falciparum, Plasmodium vivax, Public health