By; JACOB ONJEWU DICKSON
Some of the barriers preventing expecting mothers from taking drugs that prevent them and unborn babies from malaria have been listed.
Support to National Malaria Programme 2 (SuNMAP2) Kaduna State Team Leader, Christopher Musa, highlighted this while making a presentation at a one-day Media Round Table on 2019 World Malaria Day with a theme: ‘Zero Malaria Starts With Me’, held at the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), Kaduna State secretariat on Wednesday April 24, 2019.
He mentioned lack of adequate knowledge by health workers and the side effects that have been experienced by the women as some of the barriers working against the use of Sulphadoxine Pyrimethamine (SP) in preventing malaria from affecting the pregnant women.
According to him, if the health workers don’t explain properly to the ante natal patients some dos and don’ts, they end up experiencing side effects.
“Some pregnant women may not eat before going for ante natal and when they take the drugs they start throwing up, naturally, they assume it is the drug making them nauseous,” he said.
On why some also do not feel comfortable using insecticide treated nets, he said they found out that it is a psychological belief.
“Some say the nets cause discomfort, others say they can’t breathe well with the nets,” he said.
Speaking further at the event with a sub theme: ‘End Malaria in Pregnant Women’, he lamented that Subsaharan Africa is the worst region hit by Malaria worldwide, adding that if left untreated, it affects not just the pregnant women but the foetus and newborn babies.
“Pregnant women need to know they should take malaria preventive drugs from 16 weeks after pregnancy to prevent self and baby from malaria,” he advised.
Barriers to taking drugs are inadequate knowledge by health workers and side effects experienced.
Explaining their mandate, he said that SuNMAP2 which commenced on December 28, 2018 would be winding up on September 16, 2024.
Speaking further, he said that it would be implemented in six states, five in the North; Jigawa, Kaduna Katsina Kano, Yobe and Lagos from South, adding that it is sponsored by DFID.
The Media Roundtable was organised by the Africa Media Development Foundation (AMDF).