Nasarawa state Commissioner for Health, Dr Daniel Iya, says the state recorded 228,886 cases of malaria within the last 12 months.
He made the disclosure on Wednesday in Lafia at a training workshop organised by Nigeria Interfaith Action Association Association (NIFAA) for faith leaders as part of efforts to combat malaria.
Iya, who was represented by Dr Liman Mohammed-Usman, said the statistics was generated in Sept. 19 this year from the District Health Information Services platform.
He said that out of the 228, 886 cases of malaria diagnosed within the period, 2, 437 were severe and life threatening while 226, 449 were not complicated.
The commissioner said that malaria was responsible for 61 % of under five mortality in state within the period.
He attributed the surge in malaria cases in the state to non usage of Long Lasting Insecticidal Nets (LLINs), which had been proven to be one of the most effective malaria prevention interventions.
According to Iya, 1.6 million mosquito nets were distributed to households in the state in 2014.
“The 2015 malaria indicator survey shows that 76.4 per cent of households in the state own long lasting insecticidal nets; however, only 44 per cent of households use the nets,” Iya said.
The commissioner urged the participants to make a commitment to sleep under the insecticidal nets and encourage their congregation to do same.
A participant Bishop Sunday Onuoha said the essence of the training is to mobilise faith leaders in the state to encourage their congregation to use insecticidal nets provided by donor agencies.
He said that the 60 participants being trained at the workshop were drawn from Karu, Wamba and Lafia local government areas representing the three senatorial zones in the state.
“Mosquitoes does not respect status or religious inclinations and as people of faith it behoves on us to collaborate to eliminate malaria from the state,” he said.
Onuoha explained that NIFAA had trained over two million households across the country
He promised that the faith leaders would carry on with training in their various places of worship to ensure maximum effect on the communities.