REPORT: Survey combining malaria prevalence and nutrition indicators covering 184 Tanzania districts
Since 2014/15, the Ministry of Health in Tanzania, through the National Malaria Control Programme (NMCP), has been conducting school malaria surveys to document prevalence. However, in 2019 a nutrition component was added to broaden the spectrum of assessment of health indicators.
Key highlights of the 2019 School Malaria and Nutrition Survey (SMNS) Report are:
- The SMNS was conducted between August and October 2019 to evaluate the prevalence of malaria and malnutrition among public primary school pupils in Tanzania.
- The survey is the third study in a series of School Malaria Parasitemia Surveys (SMPS) conducted in Tanzania biennially from 2014/2015 until 2019 when the MoHCDGEC decided to broaden the spectrum of assessment of health indicators by adding a nutrition component among pupils.
- The survey was done on 68,147 primary school pupils aged between 5 and 19 years and covered all councils (184) in Tanzania.
- Malaria and malnutrition still pose numerous challenges to health status and socioeconomic welfare, particularly in low and middle-income countries, including Tanzania.
- Prevalence levels of malaria infection vary highly between regions and subregions with Southern and Northern regions carrying the most burden.
- There are high levels of knowledge among pupils and household members on core and effective malaria intervention, such as the use of mosquito nets – with a high proportion of households protected with LLINs.
- Prevalence of anaemia is high among young boys and girls and among late adolescents.
- Co-existence of malaria and anaemia was observed, indicating that strategies employed to curb malaria should go hand-in-hand.
- Overweight and obesity is low among pupils aged between 5 and 19 years and higher in urban areas than rural, with most overweight pupils observed in the Dar es Salaam Region.
- Dietary diversity at both the household and individual levels is below the minimum average.
- 42.0% of school children and adolescents surveyed are physically inactive.
- Future investments in malaria control interventions and nutritional services in Tanzania are highly recommended.
We bring the full report of the SMNS study here..