The Ministry of Health has unveiled plans that will see the country become malaria-free, with the pre-elimination stage, starting in 2012.
While this may sound an ambitious project, total elimination of malaria is achievable, more so with the concerted efforts by all stake holders, as has been demonstrated in other projects, such as the communal health insurance scheme where more than 90 percent of the population are subscribers.
Statistics from the Malaria Unit in Track Plus, a research centre, show that last year alone, the prevalence of malaria dropped by 40 percent. Current statistics show that the prevalence rate is down by 80 percent.
Various initiatives have been introduced to curtail the prevalence of this deadliest disease in sub-Saharan Africa, including, mass distribution of treated bed nets to millions of households.
Fighting Malaria requires a multifaceted approach; in addition to the bed nets, there is the indoor residue spraying of homes and massive sensitization of the public, encouraging them to clear
bushes – potential breeding grounds- around their homes.
In addition to these initiatives, most of which are unique to Rwanda, ensuring that the most effective anti-malaria drugs are distributed in both public and private health facilities and drugstores, will go a long way in helping combat the disease.
By continuously implementing these measures, there is no doubt that the country can become malaria-free in the near future.