Region Nine malaria report 'overstated'
Stabroek News
June 12, 2004

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The Government Information Agency (GINA) says a report from the Lethem Hospital has indicated that a Stabroek News article on a malaria outbreak in the village of Fairview is "overstated and untrue".

Region Nine's acting Regional Health Officer, Jude Isaacs forwarded the report to the Ministry of Local Government and Regional Development.

According to the report, the health worker of the village, Sarah George denied that she had told Stabroek News on May 27 that the village had 137 cases of Plasmodium Vivax malaria out of a population of 154. The acting RHO said that after speaking to George he advised that a mass blood smear of the entire village be carried out to further verify the information.

Persons working at the nearby Iwokrama Centre for Rainforest Conservation and Development backed up the information in the Stabroek News report on the magnitude of the malaria infection. A senior member of Iwokrama's staff from the Kurupukari Field Station endorsed the estimate, saying that the rate of infection was about 70 per cent of the population.

Iwokrama personnel make weekly visits to Fairview to assess the situation and to administer treatment to the infected persons.

The release said that heavy rains in various parts of the country have contributed to mosquitoes in certain areas and malaria has been threatening several hinterland areas.