Nigeria needs 'greater awareness' about malaria related maternal deaths

Malaria is responsible for 11 per cent of maternal deaths in Nigeria, it has been claimed.

Professor Emmanuel Otolorin, Jhpiego country director, said there is a need to create awareness about the dangers of the disease to ensure pregnant women and children have access to malaria commodities, according to Premium Times.

The mosquito-borne infectious disease is a big problem in Nigeria, he said, with more deaths attributed to malaria than HIV, leprosy and tuberculosis combined.

There are simple measures for controlling malaria in pregnancy already available in the country, he pointed out.

"But the problem is that in this country, a very low percentage of pregnant women access such interventions."

Women are recommended to take two doses of malaria treatment from the moment they feel the baby moving, even if they are not witnessing symptoms, the obstetric and newborn care specialist added.

The parasites can cause anaemia, damage placenta and reduce food and oxygen to the child, which could starve the unborn baby while in the stomach.

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