A medical expert, Ernest Nwankolo, on Saturday said that Malaria was currently under-diagnosed but over-treated in Nigeria.
Mr. Nwankolo, a general practitioner with the Lagos University Teaching Hospital, Idi-Araba, said in Lagos that the World Health Organisation recommended a parasite-based diagnosis of malaria before the commencement of treatment.
“Prompt case detection and treatment are vital to effective management of malaria.
“There is no data on malaria rate among suspected malaria client who purchased and used Artemisinin combination therapies (ACTs) over the counter.
“The need to institute malaria diagnosis in the huge informal private sector in Africa and Asia is currently being explored as an important strategy of expanding access to malaria parasitaemia among client.
“It is also known that malaria is still treated without diagnoses which is a bad practice, the level of Malaria Control Programme (MCP) is very low in the healthcare system,” Nwankolo said.
He said there is need to institute malaria testing in pharmaceutical shops before sales and use of malaria medicines.
“A very high proportion of adults who had no need for malaria medicine purchase and use anti-malaria because of symptoms of nausea, vomiting, poor appetite, chills, bitter taste in the mouth and dark urine.
“Some of the patients lack knowledge about the symptoms and the basic treatment on the clinical diagnoses of malaria.
“Malaria testing at all healthcare systems is a potential strategy for expanding access to malaria diagnosis.
Mr. Nwankolo urged the Malaria Control Programme to monitor all primary healthcare systems to ensure that all malaria cases were tested using Rapid Diagnosis Test and positive patients should use ACTs. (NAN)
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