The Center for Research in Infectious Diseases (CRID) and the Pan-African Mosquito Control Association (PAMCA) are the promoters of this initiative seen as a step towards achieving the “Zero malaria” target.
The fight against malaria is like a war with its own rules. It can be considered a categorical prerequisite which in the eyes of experts, its gradually becoming clear as underground water. It is based on this reality that, the observation: “you cannot win the fight against malaria without a robust surveillance at national level” emerges. This declaration is at the heart of the message delivered by Prof. Charles Wondji, Executive Director of CRID, on the closing ceremony of this training. This statement comes to unveil the “raison d’être” of this 2021 edition of the training of district-level sanitary engineers and technicians on malaria entomology surveillance: a very first of its kind in Cameroon. The town of Mbalmayo, located in the Center Region, hosted this 12-day working session. In total, 15 participants representing the 10 regions of Cameroon took part in this training.
All of them are members of staff involved in the implementation of malaria control activities in Cameroon. The beneficiaries of this working session initiated by the Center for Research in Infectious Diseases (CRID) and the Pan African Mosquito Control Association (PAMCA) comprised of 7 women and 8 men; all sanitary engineers and technicians. According to those responsible for organizing this training, this edition of the training is the first of a long series of trainings. This happens in a rather challenging context which is not very reassuring. It should be noted that, during the national “Roll back malaria” committee of February 21, 2021, it was specified that Cameroon continues to record an average of 11,000 deaths each year for about 7 million cases of malaria recorded in the country. It is undoubtedly based on this observation that this training was organized under the theme: “strengthening local capacities for the surveillance and elimination of malaria in Africa”. Started on August 2, the training lasted two weeks with both theoretical and practical lessons summarized into 11 modules.
Knowledge of the biology of malaria vectors, the implementation and evaluation of the effectiveness of vector control interventions were the two major objectives assigned to lessons given by renowned entomologists from the main research centers in Cameroon and the National Malaria Control Program (NMCP). The end of the training ceremony was chaired on August 13, 2021 by Dr Dorothy Achu Fosah Kah, Permanent Secretary at the NMCP, Prof Charles Wondji, Executive Director of CRID and Dr Billy Tene, representing Dr Antonio Nkondjio, president of PAMCA Cameroon. This moment is considered as the falling of curtains; the end of “an initiating journey comprising of theoretical sessions and practical activities in the field”, noted Takah Racheal, Senior Sanitary Engineer at the Regional Delegation of Health, Buea, South West Region, Cameroon. It is with the issuing of certificates of participation to the various participants that the 2021 edition of training ended. The 15 trained sanitary engineers and technicians are now armed to “support the National Malaria Control Program” said Dr. Dorothy Achu Fosah Kah. This is obviously a big plus. Calls for the next session are being heard!