Gauteng Health MEC Nomantu Nkomo-Ralehoko on Sunday revealed that the province recorded 11 malaria deaths and 1 103 infections between January and September 2022.
Sunday, 6 November 2022, marked Southern African Development Community (SADC) Malaria Day. It aims to create awareness about malaria and encourage the community to participate in malaria control programmes.
Nkomo-Ralehoko said she was concerned by the malaria infections in Gauteng and urged people to get tested early and treated to avoid deaths.
“It remains worrying that from January to September 2022, Gauteng recorded 1 103 cases with 11 deaths. Most of the malaria cases recorded in the province are people that travelled from Mozambique followed by Malawi, Zimbabwe and Ethiopia.
People urged to test for malaria
She advised people who had recently travelled from malaria endemic areas to seek medical treatment when they experience fever, chills, headache, and other flu-like symptoms.
“With the festive season fast approaching, we encourage people who will be travelling to and from malaria endemic areas to take prophylaxis before their visit. Complicated malaria cases and deaths are caused by malaria-infected patients who delay seeking medical help from the health facility and only visit the health centres when the disease has progressed from mild to complicated malaria,” she added.
The health department said they will be scaling up awareness for five days to educate the public about malaria prevention, symptoms, and treatment throughout the province.
“For every person who dies it is one death too many, therefore, we are working with multiple stakeholders including the tourism and transport sectors to fight this disease,” Nkomo-Ralehoko said.