US Ambassador launches 2017 school net distribution campaign

Ambassador Jackson emphasized the importance of sleeping under mosquito nets at the launch. Credit: Celia Zeilberger, USAID/Ghana [/caption] The US Ambassador, Robert Jackson, has launched the 2017 Primary School Insecticide-Treated Nets distribution campaign. The launch was on Monday, May 22 at the Southern LEKMA Cluster of Schools in Accra. Ambassador Jackson joined officials from the Ministry of Education and Ministry of Health, representatives from the health and education sectors, and primary school teachers and children at the event, which celebrated the beginning of a US government-supported campaign to distribute 1.3 million nets to Grade 2 and Grade 6 students throughout Ghana. The US government has supported this campaign, in partnership with the Ghanaian government, since 2013. It is part of the US President’s Malaria Initiative (PMI), which is led by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and implemented with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Through PMI, the US works with more than 200 partners across Africa to prevent, treat, and ultimately stamp out malaria through four proven and highly effective strategies: distributing and promoting the use of insecticide-treated nets, supporting communities to spray the interior walls of their homes with long-lasting insecticides, promoting the use of preventative treatments for pregnant women, and training and equipping health practitioners to diagnose and treat the disease. [caption id="attachment_52242" align="alignnone" width="426"] The U.S. President’s Malaria Initiative is supporting the distribution of more than one million treated nets to Ghanaian primary school children this year. Credit: Celia Zeilberger, USAID/Ghana [/caption] In Ghana, PMI works closely with the Ghanaian government and aligns its goals with those of the Ghana National Malaria Control Program. At the launch, Ambassador Jackson said defeating malaria would save lives and stimulate global economic growth.  He stressed that the disease could be stopped. “Not many people realize it, but not that long ago, large parts of the United States were plagued by malaria.  In the 1940s, the U.S. government established The National Malaria Eradication Program, which used similar strategies to those we use today.  That program was successful: America permanently eradicated malaria in 1951,” he said. “I believe, if we all work together, we can do the same in every corner of the world.  The main point is, we can stamp out malaria for good,” he said. President George W. Bush launched this initiative in 2005. In the past 12 years, deaths from malaria have been slashed in half, from more than 800,000 a year to about 400,000. In Ghana, all-cause mortality of children under five has decreased by 46 percent during this time.

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Source:|Ghana ]]>