Dr Franklin Asiedu Bekoe (6th from left), Director, Public Health, GHS; Dr Keziah Malm (5th from left), Programme Manager, NMEP, and Cecilia Senoo (6th from right), Executive Director, HFFG, with members of the National Malaria Elimination Task Force
Dr Franklin Asiedu Bekoe (6th from left), Director, Public Health, GHS; Dr Keziah Malm (5th from left), Programme Manager, NMEP, and Cecilia Senoo (6th from right), Executive Director, HFFG, with members of the National Malaria Elimination Task Force

National Malaria Elimination Task Force inaugurated

A National Malaria Elimination Task Force has been inaugurated as part of the country’s efforts to enhance collaboration and effectiveness in combating malaria.

Advertisement

The task force has a mandate to provide strategic guidance and technical support to Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) and Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs) to strengthen their capacity for effective participation in malaria elimination efforts in the country.

Inaugurated by Dr Franklin Asiedu-Bekoe, the Director of Public Health, at the Ghana Health Service (GHS), the initiative is a partnership with the National Malaria Elimination Programme (NMEP) and Hope for Future Generations (HFFG) with support from the Civil Society for Malaria Elimination (CS4ME) network, a global network of civil society organisations and communities contributing to malaria elimination.

Public health threat

In his remarks, Dr Asiedu-Bekoe said malaria remained a significant public health threat in Ghana and its elimination demanded a unified effort saying over the years, the country had recorded incredible progress in saving lives and reducing the burden of the disease.

He said the GHS had “recognised the critical role that CSOs and NGOs play in achieving public health goals and through the NMEP, several NGOs have been engaged to support community-level sensitisation activities to increase awareness, improve knowledge and changed behaviour to increase the uptake of interventions”.

To this end, he said over 50 NGOs were working in specified districts in collaboration with the District Health Management teams to undertake the national elimination agenda.

He, therefore, charged that task force saying “Your dedication and reach at the community level are invaluable assets in our fight against malaria,” adding that “We at the GHS firmly believe in the power of collaboration”.

He added that the inauguration of the task force comes at a critical juncture saying “Ghana has recently, launched its ambitious Elimination Strategic Plan, outlining a roadmap for achieving a malaria-free nation”.

Mouthpiece

Dr Keziah Malm, Programme Manager, NMEP, in a remark, said the task force was to become the mouthpiece in strengthening CSOs and NGOs' malaria presence in the country.

Through the task force, she said the country’s malaria elimination agenda would be realised as it would speak on issues relating to malaria at the community and district levels.
Giving further justifications for setting up the task force, Dr Malm said the NMEP required robust collaboration with CSOs and NGOs to successfully implement the country’s Elimination Strategic Plan.

Also, she said strengthening CSOs and NGOs' capacity would enhance community-level sensitisation, increasing awareness and behaviour change. She added that a unified voice from CSOs and NGOs would strengthen advocacy efforts and resource mobilisation for malaria elimination.

In a brief overview, the Executive Director of HFFG, Cecilia Senoo, said Tanzania, Nigeria and Cameroun had a similar task force in place to ensure that CSOs had a voice in national malaria programmes.

“We cannot achieve elimination if community voice is not involved”, she said.

According to her, the country did not have a strong network speaking on malaria and, therefore, the need for partnership had become necessary to enhance the capacities of CSOs and NGOs.

Writer’s email:[email protected]

Connect With Us : 0242202447 | 0551484843 | 0266361755 | 059 199 7513 |

Like what you see?

Hit the buttons below to follow us, you won't regret it...

0
Shares