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The Latest Edition of "Eyes on malaria" magazine will be out very soon!! | CALL FOR ARTICLES: AMMREN is inviting journalists / writers / scientists interested in reporting on malaria to send articles for publication in its international magazine “Eyes on Malaria” and for posting on its website. Please contact the AMMREN Secretariat for more details click here. Enjoy your stay!. Volunteers and interns urgently needed to work with an NGO working in the area of malaria and health. Apply through - ammren1@gmail.com / ammren1@yahoo.com. Journalists interested in reporting on and writing articles on health issues should please reply through this email: ammren1@gmail.com

ANNOUNCEMENTS:::

TIPS ON MALARIA

  • HOW CAN MOSQUITOES BE CONTROLLED?

    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.

  • HOW CAN I PROTECT MYSELF FROM MOSQUITO-BORN DISEASES?

    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.

  • WHO ARE AT RISK?


    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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The last Mosquito

Kikki had been awake most of the night and couldn't keep from yawning. The cause of her staying up late the previous night kept coming back to mind. Her little niece, Sunky, had been unable to sleep for the same reason – mosquitoes.

She had come over to Kikki's room following a late hour spray of insecticide.

Kikki yawned again, remembering a quote by Betty Reese: If you think you're too small to be effective, you have never been in bed with a mosquito.

Sunky asked, "Why do mosquitoes bite humans and why couldn't they killed all at once

“As small as mosquitoes are, they really do make a huge impact on society,” Kikki contemplated aloud. “It's strange how they consume our funds, time and emotions.”

She still ponders over Sunky's question about what to do with “the last mosquito on earth:
kill it or leave it?”

She had really only been trying to be patient with the 12 year-old until she talked about the boy in her school who died from malaria. It was then that she understood Sunky's

“It could have been Sunky,” she thought. She humans and why couldn't they be killed all at banished the thought and quickly pulled out pen and paper. As she pondered what just one mosquito could do she began to write, starting with a sketch.

She was impressed but knew the diagram was far from conclusive. But it made clearer the
picture of the havoc being caused by the little, pesky pests.

'A child dies from malaria every 30 seconds'was a statistic she had always known and wondered when it would cease to hold. She pulled out a calculator. That's 2, 880 children a
day, 86,400 children in one month... 31,536,000 children in one year! She shook her head in disbelief. That's some country's entire population wiped out!

Kikki was intimidated by statistics from L. Patricia Kite's Insect Facts and Folklore: “One scientist tried to figure out how many on the continent during the month, the following could hold:

1,000,000,000 Africans = 100 Africans: 1 mosquito
10,000,000 mosquitoes

So, kill one mosquito and 100 Africans would probably be safe in one month.

1,000,000,000 Africans= 11,574 Africans: 1 child
86,400 children dead

So, out of 11, 574 Africans, one child dies from malaria in one month.

Now she knew there was nothing negligible about killing one mosquito. Even if it means making it my business to kill one a day, for the next 50 years!

Quickly, she calculated what that half-century effort would amount to:
1 x 365 x 50 = 18,250 mosquitoes.

If each person kills a mosquito a day; or better, fumigate entire areas, say once in 3 months; or mobilise a community to locate mosquito hideouts...

It was time for her to act, one mosquito at a time. Hopefully, the eradication trend that mosquitoes would be produced from one female with a month-long life span. If this female lays about ten egg batches with two hundred eggs in each batch, and each of the young begins producing its own egg batches at two weeks, in five generations, if all the mosquitoes survived, there would be 20 million mosquitoes that originated from just the one original female.”

Assuming the 20 million mosquitoes produced for the month by the one original female were 50% female and 50% male, there would be 10 million female Anopheles mosquitoes in need of human blood to reproduce.

Further, assuming there are 1 billion Africans started with smallpox that was now on to almost complete success with poliomyelitis would eventually take on malaria.

She had been reminded of Sunky when she read about the Bangladeshi girl who, in 1975, recovered from the last case of smallpox on the Asian continent. And how she wished the boy in Sunky's school who died from malaria had turned out like the young man in Somalia who, in 1977, became the last smallpox survivor in the world.

The World Health Organisation (WHO) would two years after claim worldwide victory over that scourge. But one question had remained, and for many years: To keep or not to keep the last smallpox virus in the world?

She wasn't sure which way she would have voted were she to be on the executive board of
WHO which, in 2002, finally voted against the motion, “so that scientists can continue research on the virus”. Indeed!

Now all she wanted was to ask someone: When will it be the turn of malaria? And mosquitoes!

Yemi Sanusi (AMMREN Nigeria)
is a medical doctor pursuing a career in writing.

MALARIA
"Malaria actually could be fixed. We don't need a miracle drug. We don't need a miracle vaccine. We have the tools now. We actually could save millions of lives."  Nick White

MALARIA QUOTE
“Antimalaria drug resistance is like cancer, it must be fought at every level – affected countries need to be in the frontline in combating emergence of drug resistance. WHO should be empowered and supported to take a strong lead. It is crucial to protect ACTs as they are the best treatments for millions of people against malaria”

Prof Nicholas J. White
of the Mahidol-Oxford Research Unit in Bangkok,
Thailand.

 

Editions: 
Eighth Edition