Prevalence of Malaria among Primary School Pupils in Awka Metropolis, Awka South Local Government, Anambra State, Nigeria

Chiobi Chinonyerem Blessed-Nwankwo *

Department of Parasitology and Entomogology, Faculty of Biosciences, Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Awka, Anambra State, Nigeria.

Izunna Somadina Okwelogu

Department of Medical Laboratory Science, Faculty of Health Sciences & Technology, Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Nnewi Campus, Anambra State, Nigeria.

Akulue J.C

Department of Medical Laboratory Science, Faculty of Health Sciences & Technology, Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Nnewi Campus, Anambra State, Nigeria.

Iwueze Miriam Okwudili

Department of Parasitology and Entomogology, Faculty of Biosciences, Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Awka, Anambra State, Nigeria.

Ahanonu Gloria Ezinwanne

Department of Parasitology and Entomogology, Faculty of Biosciences, Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Awka, Anambra State, Nigeria.

Nwankwo, B. C.

Department of Banking and Finance, Faculty of Management Sciences, Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Awka, Anambra State, Nigeria.

*Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.


Abstract

A study on the prevalence of malaria among Pupils in Awka Metropolis, Awka South Local Government, Anambra State, Nigeria was carried out in 2021. The study specifically examined the prevalence of malaria infection in relation to gender, age, class and body mass index among primary school pupils in Awka and the impact of the parents’ occupation and education status on the infection rate. A total of 414 pupils of both male and female between the age of 5 and 16 years from five schools participated in the study. The study detected Malaria parasites in their blood through microscopic examination of blood films. Questionnaire and physical observation were used to obtain demographic data of the pupils as well as some influencing environmental factors. All statistical analyses were performed using SPSS version 20. The prevalence of malaria and helminths were compared using Chi-square test. The threshold for statistical significance was at p<0.05. Out of the 414 pupils examined, 24(5.80%) were positive for malaria with females having greater prevalence than the males. In addition, parasitaemia was highest 18 (22.2%) in 11-13 years age group and least for both 5-7 years and 8-10 years age groups. Pupils of parents with no formal education had the highest malaria prevalence while pupils of parents with formal education had the least prevalence for malaria. The study revealed that malaria still poses a health risk for primary school children in the study area. There is need for the collaborative efforts of parents and teachers on the proper education of the pupils on the measures to be adopted to protect themselves against mosquito bites and disease transmission. There is also need for the government to provide intervention measures such as provision of long lasting insecticide treated bed nets and sponsoring health awareness programs especially at the primary school level to reduce vector-man contact and ultimately disease transmission.

Keywords: Malaria, primary schools, Awka metropolis


How to Cite

Blessed-Nwankwo, C. C., Okwelogu , I. S., Akulue J.C, Okwudili , I. M., Ezinwanne , A. G., & Nwankwo, B. C. (2024). Prevalence of Malaria among Primary School Pupils in Awka Metropolis, Awka South Local Government, Anambra State, Nigeria. South Asian Journal of Parasitology, 7(1), 1–9. Retrieved from https://journalsajp.com/index.php/SAJP/article/view/166

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