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    Mosquitoes around the home can be reduced significantly by minimizing the amount of standing water available for mosquito breeding. Residents are urged to reduce standing water around the home in a variety of ways.


    The best way is to avoid being bitten by mosquitoes.This can be accomplished using personal protecting  while outdoors when mosquitoes are present. Treated bed nets should be used sleeping. Mosquito repellent should be used when outdoor.


    Nearly half of the world’s population is at risk of getting malaria. Pregnant women are particularly at risk of malaria. Children under 5 years are at high risk of malaria.


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BY Eunice Menka -Ghana

The  Navrongo  Health  Research  Centre  (NHRC), north  of  the  country,  is  one  of   Ghana's  best  in Tmalaria research activities.

The NHRC is located at the Kassena-Nankana district of northern Ghana and was established in 1989 as a field site for a Vitamin A Supplementation Trial (VAST). Following
the  successful  completion  of  this  trial,  the Ministry  of Health  adopted  the  site  in  1992,  to  serve  as  one  of  its research  centres  with  the  mandate  to  investigate  the
health  problems  affecting  the  northern  sector  of  the country and  to  inform policy makers.

In keeping with its mandate, the majority of work done in Navrongo has been in the area of communicable diseases such  as  malaria,  diarrheal  diseases,  cerebro-spinal meningitis,  and  others  like  maternal  health  and adolescent sexual and reproductive health and lymphatic filariasis.

A number of the findings of the studies have been adopted into the national policy in Ghana and in the international health community. These  include  the administration of Vitamin A to infants, the use of impregnated bed nets in malaria  control  and  the  community-based  approach  to health delivery and provision of  family planning services.

Current Malaria Research Activities:   
The Birth Cohort Study

The Centre is conducting a malaria study to follow up the over 2000 newborn babies recruited into a Birth Cohort Study. These children will be followed up till they are five years of age. The Centre is measuring various aspects of malaria  infections  including  mild  malaria  episodes, severe malaria and malaria mortality. This  information would increase the ability to detect associations between host genetic and  immunological  factors associated with resistance  to malaria morbidity and mortality.

Home management of acute febrile illnesses in northern Ghana using artesunate amodiaquine combination: The role of rapid malaria diagnostic  testing.

This  study  aims  to  establish  the  potential  benefits  of incorporating  rapid  malaria  diagnostic  testing  for  the home management of malaria and other febrile illnesses at the community level. This is to ensure that the recently introduced  combination  therapies  (  ACTs)  are  at  least targeted at patients with a higher probability of malaria.   


  Dr. Abraham V.O. Hodgson, Director,
     Navrongo Health Research Centre

And  those  patients  with  other  febrile  illness  could  be appropriately treated as opposed to treating all childhood febrile  illness  with  antimalarial  and  antibiotics  as  it currently pertains.  The Centre would therefore assess the impact  of  rapid  diagnostic  testing  kits  (RDTs)  on  full clinical recovery rate from acute febrile illness following treatment  using  ACTs  and  /or  antibiotics  at  the community or household  level and to establish  the cost effectiveness  of RDTs use  in  the home management of acute  febrile  illness.  Children  6-59    months  of  age resident    in  the  communities with  acute  febrile  illness constitute  the study population.

Other Activities
The Centre facilitates field activities of students from the Ghana  School  of  Public  Health,  Community  Health Nursing  Training  School,  the  INDEPTH-Network-sponsored  programme  at   the  Univer s i ty  of  Witwatersrand,  and  the  Georgetown  University,  USA.

During these field visits, students get the opportunity to carry out independent research studies with the support of a mentor or supervisor. The  Centre  has  a  rich  manpower  of  epidemiologists, demographers,  social  scientists,  anthropologists, clinicians,  biostatisticians  and  bioethicist  who  are responsible  for  developing  and  leading  core  research proposals. To strengthen the knowledge and skills of the human  resource,  a  number  of  the  staff  are  given  the opportunity  to  participate  in  training  programmes,
conferences  and  workshops  both  nationally  and internationally  to  present  scientific  papers  based  on research conducted by  the Centre.

The Health Research Centre is one of the centers chosen across Africa to participate  in the INDEPTH Effectiveness and  Safety  Studies  of  Anti-malarial  Drugs  In  Africa (INESS) project.

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