More than 3000 students tested positive for malaria in Odisha schools

In a recent survey of health officials, it has been found that around 3,434 students are suffering from malaria. A test was being conducted in order to check for the vector borne disease of students staying in government-run residential schools. The District Collector of Kandhamal District, Yamini Sarangi said to a local newspaper, “The affected students have been administered drugs. The health officials are keeping a watch on their condition.”

odisha students tested positive for malariaState’s SC & ST development department had run several tests in between July 6 to August 3, in approximately 214 government residential schools and blood samples of 19,767 students were tested. Keeping in consideration that 65 students out of 143 students were found suffering from malaria in primary residential schools at Ranipathara district, the district collector had instructed to run tests in various other government-run residential schools to check for other students suffering from this harmful disease. A three-month awareness program has been launched by the collector in order to spread knowledge about personal hygiene, water and sanitation to prevent malaria, diarrhea and dengue in the district.

Such awareness program will focus mainly on the school children from government schools who are mostly from weaker section of the society and had faces difficulty in managing personal hygiene. The social workers, health workers and other government authorized health activists have come forward to support the program. Any such cases will be immediately notified to the government hospitals as said by Sapaneswar Gadanayak, Chief District Medical Officer.

At a recent event, Kandhamal district has witnessed deaths of two person this year who were suffering from malaria. While in previous year, six people have died of such vector borne diseases. At a similar event, two people suffering from dengue were tested positive in the year 2014.

Under the directives of district collector, all government run schools as well as hostels and surroundings would be sanitized. Indoor Residual Spraying (IRS) would be initiated under this scheme to check for vector borne diseases. As stated by district consultant, Kumuda Chandra Sahu of National Vector Borne Diseases, students staying in the government hostels would be provided with mosquito nets and such students will be encouraged to use those.

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