What is Malaria & its Symptoms?
Malaria is a life-threatening disease caused by Plasmodium parasites that are transmitted to people through the bites of infected female mosquitoes.
Malaria is an acute febrile illness. In a non-immune individual, symptoms appear 7 days or more (usually 10–15 days) after the infective mosquito bite. The first symptoms fever, headache, chills and vomiting, may be mild and difficult to recognize as malaria. If not treated within 24 hours, malaria parasites can progress to severe illness, often leading to death.
Children with severe malaria frequently develop one or more of the following symptoms: severe anaemia, respiratory distress in relation to metabolic acidosis, or cerebral malaria. In adults, multi-organ involvement is also frequent. In malaria endemic areas, people may develop partial immunity, allowing asymptomatic infections to occur.
Diagnosis and Treatment
Early diagnosis and treatment of malaria reduces disease and prevents deaths. It also contributes to reducing malaria transmission.
WHO recommends that all cases of suspected malaria be confirmed using parasite-based diagnostic testing (either microscopy or rapid diagnostic test) before administering treatment. Results of parasitological confirmation can be available in 30 minutes or less. Treatment, solely on the basis of symptoms should only be considered when a parasitological diagnosis is not possible.
Prevention: Indoor spraying with residual insecticides.
Indoor residual spraying (IRS) with insecticides is a powerful way to rapidly reduce malaria transmission. Its full potential is realized when at least 80% of houses in targeted areas are sprayed. Indoor spraying is effective for 3–6 months, depending on the insecticide formulation used and the type of surface on which it is sprayed. In some settings, multiple spray rounds are needed to protect the population for the entire malaria season.
Antimalarial medicines can also be used to prevent malaria. For travellers, malaria can be prevented through chemoprophylaxis, which suppresses the blood stage of malaria infections, thereby preventing malaria disease. For pregnant women living in moderate-to-high transmission areas, WHO recommends intermittent preventive treatment with sulfadoxine-pyrimethamine, at each scheduled antenatal visit after the first trimester. Similarly, for infants living in high-transmission areas of Africa, 3 doses of intermittent preventive treatment with sulfadoxine-pyrimethamine are recommended, delivered alongside routine vaccinations.
In 2012, WHO recommended Seasonal Malaria Chemoprevention as an additional malaria prevention strategy for areas of the Sahel sub-Region of Africa. The strategy involves the administration of monthly courses of amodiaquine plus sulfadoxine-pyrimethamine to all children under 5 years of age during the high transmission season.
Does my Insurance Policy Cover the Malaria treatment?
Yes. according to CCHI unified Policy terms and conditions, health insurance policies in Saudi Arabia should cover the treatment Malaria among other similar diseases.Please Click Here to access the Unified CCHI Policy Wordings.
Please Click Here to access the Vaccination Schedule issues by the Ministry Of Health.
References:"Malaria." Mediacenter. N.p., Apr. 2016. Web. Aug. 2016.
"Malaria." Rules. N.p., n.d. Web. Aug. 2016.