Over half of Botswana’s population is at risk from malaria.
Malaria in Botswana
Although so many people in Botswana are at risk from malaria, the country is making significant strides in preventing and controlling the disease. In the last ten years, reported malaria cases have dropped by 79% and deaths from malaria have been cut by 87%.
In 2009, Botswana joined with neighbouring countries in southern Africa to announce the shared goal of eliminating malaria in four countries (Botswana, Namibia, Swaziland and South Africa). We are proud to have supported Botswana’s efforts towards its ambitious goal to become malaria free.
Our support in Botswana
Smart technology is being used in the fight against malaria and we supported an innovative project in the Chobe district of Botswana which saw health teams diagnose and report malaria cases via their mobile phones. To accurately diagnose malaria cases, the project trained local health workers to use simple tests - known as Rapid Diagnostic Tests – which ensure that only confirmed cases are treated with malaria medicines. The test results are reported via mobile phones offering real time access to show malaria “hotspots” for the first time which helps in planning to ensure there are enough malaria medicines, nets and sprays available in the areas that need them.
We also supported a mosquito net distribution and malaria education campaign in the North-Western Okavango region. Using a new approach involving home to home visits to deliver and hang nets and explain the importance of malaria protection, there was a dramatic rise in households owning nets from 13% to 94% between 2007 and 2010. This success led to the project model being adopted as standard practice by the Botswana Government, with the distribution of an additional 100,000 nets by the end of 2010.
Our partners in Botswana
The work in Botswana was only possible thanks to our partnership with the Clinton Health Access Initiative, Botswana’s Ministry of Health, Malaria No More (US), and Positive Innovation for the Next Generation (PING) and in kind donations from Hewlett-Packard and Mascomsthe Ministry of Health of Botswana.