Malaria Outbreak investigation in Chitulipasi, Beitbridge District, Matebeleland South Province, 2015
Background: Cases of Malaria at Chitulipasi clinic in Ward One of Beitbridge district surpassed
epidemic thresholds from week 9 through week 15. In total 223 cases were recorded in ward one
from weeks 9 to 15. We investigated the outbreak of malaria in Ward One.
Methods: A one on one unmatched case control study was conducted among residents in Ward
One. A case was a person from Ward One who presented to Chitulipasi clinic with sudden onset
of intermittent fever associated with any of the following; shivering, sweating, joint and muscle
pains, nausea, vomiting, diarrhoea and headache and was diagnosed malaria with Rapid
Diagnostic Testing, from weeks 7 to 15 of 2015. Sixty cases and 60 controls were systematically
and randomly selected respectively. Written informed consent was obtained from all study
participants. Data were analysed using Epi Info.
Results: Females constituted 53.3% (n=32) and 55.0% (n=33) of cases and controls respectively
(p=0.86). The median ages in years were 22 (Q1=13; Q3=37) and 23 (Q1=17; Q3=35) for cases
and controls respectively (p=0.95). Staying in house with closed eaves (OR 0.05 95% CI 0.01,
0.40), staying 3km away from stagnant water body (OR 0.30 95% CI 0.13, 0.70) and having a
net hanging per sleeping space (OR 0.07 95% CI 0.03, 0.17) were significant protective factors
for contracting malaria.
Conclusion: The outbreak was driven by staying near stagnant water, staying in houses with
open eaves and not using a mosquito net. Emphasis on larviciding, utilization of nets and
sleeping under nets should be made. Health education was provided to the community.
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