Health  

NIMR confab brainstorms on solution to malaria scourge

In a bid to chart path for the total eradication of mosquito in Nigeria and sub Sahara Africa, the Nigerian Institute of Medical Research (NIMR) Yaba, Lagos, holds 7th distinguished lecture on Tuesday, November 7, 2017.

The lecture titled “Malaria, mosquitoes and man: The Battle continues” would be delivered by the Entomologist and Coordinator, Malaria Research Programme, Nigerian Institute of Medical Research, NIMR, Dr. Samuel Awolola.

Awolola earlier this year insisted that there is no effective malaria vaccine yet and cautioned Nigerians not to be carried away by the result of the clinical trials.

According to a report from the World Malaria Report 2016, some improvements in diagnostic testing for children and preventive treatment for pregnant women have been recorded. Similarly, the number of pregnant women who received some form of preventive treatment also increased five-fold.

But the report also portrayed the grave challenge standing on the path of eliminating the scourge: the enormity of the numbers of people afflicted with the ailment. Sub-Sahara Africa still bears the greatest malaria burden with 92 per cent of the 212 million new malaria cases and 429,000 deaths worldwide in 2015.

Director General of NIMR and also the Chief Host of the conference, Prof. Babatunde Lawal, said the lecture would be part of the institute’s 4th Nigerian Institute of Medical Research International Scientific Conference that would hold between November 7 to November 9, 2017, in Lagos.

Lawal said the event, with theme; “Funding Health Research in a Depressed Economy” is an annual forum that is expected to gather some over 500 delegates from across research community.

According to him, “NIMR is set for another milestone in global research to the end the Communicable and Non-communicable Diseases. “Other topics of discussions include disease surveillance, counteracting the upsurge in Non communicable diseases (NCDs), improving the diagnosis and management of neglected tropical disease (NTDs), improving awareness and access to mental health acre and updates on the care and treatment of communicable diseases.”

“This year’s conference will enrich the knowledge of researchers, scientists, clinicians; public health experts, community advocates, and media professionals,” he added.

He said that the institute’s Centre for Human Virology and Genomics recently got the International Organisation, ISO 15189:2012 standards, making it first public health laboratory in Nigeria to attain such status. The centre with unique accreditation number M0588 has also been listed as a South African National Accreditation System (SANAS) Accredited Medical Testing Laboratory.

These, Lawal said, is a reliable factor of professional competence and results generated from such laboratories are comparable with those produced by any accredited laboratory in the world. On the theme of the conference, Deputy Director of Research and Head of the Department, NIMR, Dr. Rosemary Audu, said research, before now was not given priority due to poor funding, hence, the need to proffer ways on how to sustain research even in a depressed economy.

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