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Malaria Infection and Anemia Prevalence in Zambia's Luangwa District: An Area of Near-Universal Insecticide-Treated Mosquito Net Coverage

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  • Department of International Health and Development, Tulane University School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine, New Orleans, Louisiana; Partnership for Appropriate Technology (PATH) in Health Malaria Control and Evaluation Partnership in Africa (MACEPA), Chainama Hospital, Lusaka, Zambia; National Malaria Control Centre, Ministry of Health Zambia, Chainama Hospital, Lusaka, Zambia

We examined the relationship between insecticide-treated mosquito nets (ITNs), malaria parasite infection, and severe anemia prevalence in children in Luangwa District, Zambia, an area with near-universal ITN coverage, at the end of the 2008 and 2010 malaria transmission seasons. Malaria parasite infection prevalence among children < 5 years old was 9.7% (95% confidence interval [CI] = 8.0–11.4%) over both survey years. Prevalence of severe anemia among children 6–59 months old was 6.9% (95% CI = 5.4–8.5%) over both survey years. Within this context of near-universal ITN coverage, we were unable to detect a significant association between malaria parasite or severe anemia prevalence and ITNs (possession and use). In addition to maintaining universal ITN coverage, it will be essential for the malaria control program to achieve high ITN use and laboratory diagnosis and treatment of all fevers among all age groups to further reduce the malaria burden in this area.

Author Notes

*Address correspondence to Thomas P. Eisele, Department of International Health and Development, Tulane University School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine, 1440 Canal Street, Suite 2200, New Orleans, LA 70112. E-mail: teisele@tulane.edu

Financial support: This research was funded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (1R18CK000102-01) and the Partnership for Appropriate Technology in Health (PATH) Malaria Control and Evaluation Partnership in Africa (MACEPA).

Authors' addresses: Thomas P. Eisele, Joseph Keating, and Paul Hutchinson, Department of International Health and Development, Tulane University School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine, New Orleans, LA, E-mails: teisele@tulane.edu, jkeating@tulane.edu, and phutchin@tulane.edu. John M. Miller, Partnership for Appropriate Technology in Health (PATH) Malaria Control and Evaluation Partnership in Africa (MACEPA), Chainama Hospital, Lusaka, Zambia, E-mail: jmiller@path.org. Hawela B. Moonga and Busiku Hamainza, National Malaria Control Centre, Ministry of Health Zambia, Chainama Hospital, Lusaka, Zambia, E-mails: mhawela@yahoo.co.uk and bossbusk@gmail.com.

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