The number of malaria cases in Limpopo has decreased but concerns remain that those infected do not seek treatment fast enough, the Malaria Institute said on Wednesday.
“We still have malaria, but it’s a low number as compared to other years,” said head of the Malaria Institute, Philip Kruger.
The Malaria Institute reported that during the 2015/16 financial year, only 1,300 cases of malaria had been recorded in the province. This was a significant decline from the 8,000 cases reported in the previous financial year.
“It is one of the lowest cases to be recorded over the past 20 years,” said Kruger.
However, Kruger said it remained a concern that people were still dying from malaria and that those in the Mopani and Vhembe areas continued to be victims. Not too long ago – in the 2010/11 financial year – the highest number of deaths from malaria was reported, with 119 people succumbing to the disease.
Kruger said people became victims because they would undermine symptoms of the treatable disease.
Symptoms usually appear between seven or 15 days after the infective mosquito bite. Fever, headaches, chills, feeling weak, lethargy, diarrhoea, dizziness, vomiting and pains throughout the body were signs to look out for.
Kruger warned that signs should not be ignored as delaying treatment could make the disease resistant to treatment.
Kruger also made mention of government’s household spraying programme on which they were spending millions of rands. However, despite persistent spraying, many residents continued to be bitten by mosquitoes.
This, said Kruger, could be blamed on a decline in fumigation and low rainfall.
– African News Agency (ANA)