NICD reports increase in malaria cases. The National Institute for Communicable Diseases (NICD) has reported a significant increase in malaria cases in Gauteng and endemic provinces. According to the NICD spokesperson, Sinenhlanhla Jimoh, many severe malaria cases are due to late detection or presentation as reported by the Herald Live. Malaria that is not diagnosed and left untreated can quickly develop into a severe, fatal illness.
Jimoh urged individuals with fever or flu-like symptoms residing in malaria-risk areas in Limpopo, KwaZulu-Natal, and Mpumalanga or who have travelled to these areas within the past six weeks to undergo a malaria test by blood smear microscopy or malaria rapid diagnostic test.
If the test returns positive for malaria, the patient must immediately be put on malaria treatment.
It is essential for patients to inform their healthcare provider about their recent travel, particularly to neighbouring countries and malaria-risk areas in South Africa, to make the healthcare provider aware of the possibility of malaria. The NICD also stated that individuals with unexplained fever who have not travelled to a malaria-endemic area but are progressively getting sicker, with a low platelet count, should consider Odyssean or “taxi malaria,” which is transmitted by “hitch-hiking” mosquitoes.
Photo by Jimmy Chan