Government Trains Cultural Leaders to Combat Malaria

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The Government of Uganda, through the Ministry of Health, has initiated a nationwide training program for cultural leaders in various cultural institutions across the country. Among those trained include the Inzuyamasaba clan chairmen from the clans of Lutsheke, Busano, Bufumbo, Bulago, Busiu, and Buwagogo, among others.

The training, conducted by TASO Uganda on behalf of the government and other leading partners in malaria control such as the World Health Organization (WHO), Chase Malaria Out of Uganda, RBM (a partnership to combat malaria in Uganda), and USAID, aims to equip cultural leaders with knowledge on the prevention and eradication of malaria in their communities. Facilitators, mostly drawn from TASO, explained to participants how malaria is transmitted through female mosquitoes to humans.

In a guided learning approach, the facilitators outlined several measures aimed at combating malaria at home, including draining stagnant water, sleeping under treated mosquito nets, and clearing bushy areas around homes and water points, among other interventions.

The training, funded by the government and its partners, also highlighted various negative impacts attributed to malaria, such as being a leading cause of death, leading to miscarriages among pregnant mothers, causing absenteeism in schools. It also pointed out that, on average, over 30,000 shillings are spent on treating malaria for every individual who visits a health facility.

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The Ministry of Health outlined interventions it is undertaking to eradicate malaria across cultural institutions in Uganda, such as spraying, treatment, and continuous empowerment of cultural actors with information on malaria prevention, among other measures.

The training sessions were conducted in Bugisu, Bugwere, Bunyoro, Kasese, Acholi, Buganda, Busoga, among other cultural institutions.

The writer is a researcher from Mbale and also serves as the spokesperson for Inzuyamasaba. Contact: 0782231577.

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