Health Minister Dr Jane Ruth Aceng yesterday announced that the government will continue to roll out countrywide vaccination of children in 2023 even though aid from supporting partners is reducing.
She made the revelation while responding to legislators that were requesting the government to strengthen their fight against the disease. Aceng notified that although the vaccine won't be 100 percent effective, it will reduce the malaria burden given that malaria is responsible for 30 percent of outpatient visits and 20 percent of all hospital admissions.
James Onen, popularly known as Fatboy during The Fatboy Show on Friday morning expressed concern towards the reduced funding from donors, predicting that the government is most likely going to be the biggest fundraiser of the campaign.
His co-host Olive Najjuma added, “the minister says that the money used to fight malaria is from donors and it's diminishing, and I’m like why don’t we use the money that was provided towards the fight of COVID 19 especially now when there’s a very low turnout for vaccinations.”
“I think the government will have to pull up its socks in the malaria vaccination campaign but then the question is, will we afford to do so? Because it is said that Uganda spends over 120 million dollars on malaria treatment with most of it being foreign aid. Now if they roll out, shall we afford to spend 120 million dollars annually on one disease?” She asked.
“In 2020 alone, the country recorded a total of 20 million malaria cases and 30,000 people succumbed to the disease. And yet it was all about washing hands and wearing masks for the last two years,” Fatboy exclaimed.
Not claiming that COVID 19 wasn’t a serious ailment, Fatboy reasoned that when the fatality rates are compared, it indicates that if all the attention wasn’t directed towards COVID 19, the fatalities recorded wouldn’t be as high.
Nevertheless, the presenters encouraged listeners to adopt preventive measures such as spraying, getting rid of stagnant water around their homes and endeavoring to sleep under a treated mosquito net to protect themselves against the fatal disease.
The Fatboy show is hosted by James Onen aka Fatboy, Olive and Sarah every weekday from 6am to 10am on RX Radio.