US agency to fund DDT exercise

Moses Mulando | 19 Feb 2007
New Vision
The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) is to fund the spraying of DDT following a request by the Ugandan Government.

The health state minister, Emmanuel Otaala, on Friday revealed that USAID had earmarked $3.5m (about sh6.2b) for the exercise but added that the agency would first carry out a 3-month study on the impact of the pesticide before offering the funds.

He said the spraying would begin in the north which has the highest cases of malaria and stated that the ministry would train district health workers to help in the exercise.

On need for more funds, Otaala observed: "We are requesting the Government to increase the malaria budget because we cannot only rely on donors to effectively combat the disease."

He added that the Government in December began distributing free mosquito nets.

Otaala noted that 896,000 nets had been given out in 39 districts and one million more were expected by the end of February.

He stressed that the beneficiaries are children below five years and pregnant mothers.

The National Medical Stores will be streamlined so that free malaria drugs are delivered to people.
The minister made the remarks after meeting USAID agents and other health officials.