The case for prevention is as strong in Cote d’Ivoire as anywhere – nearly 50 percent of all hospital visits are caused by malaria. Imagine what a reduction in that number could mean for the overall health system in Cote d’Ivoire and for the country’s ability to respond to other health issues.
The health system in parts of Cote d’Ivoire have all but collapsed since the the 2004 crisis. But the country is on the road to recovery, and while it is behind in reaching the Abuja targets of 80 percent coverage of insecticide-treated nets by 2010, efforts are being made and new partnerships formed to help the country get as many bed nets as possible out to children under five and pregnant women.
I spent the last five days in Cote d’Ivoire with a delegation from the Texas Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church and the General Board of Global Ministries of the United Methodist Church to learn more about the malaria situation in Cote d’Ivoire and the opportunities to partner with the country and others to save lives by preventing malaria.
This coming November, Cote d’Ivoire will be undertaking a measles campaign to vaccinate more than 3.2 million children (9-59 months). And thanks to new partnerships, close to one million bed nets will be distributed as well. In partnership with the UN Foundation’s Nothing But Nets campaign, the Texas Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church and its partner, the United Methodist Church in Cote d’Ivoire, will be supporting Cote d’Ivoire’s efforts to distribute bed nets to children under the age of five in November.
I will be sure to keep you all posted as November gets closer, but in the meantime, we still need more insecticide-treated bed nets for Cote d’Ivoire. It’s simple. Every $10 will be another bed net for a child in Cote d’Ivoire. Help us send more nets and save more lives this November.