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Ait Taleb unveils national strategy

The Ministry of Health and Social Protection has unveiled a set of measures it is working to implement in order to protect Moroccans from viruses and diseases declared by the World Health Organization (WHO) to be a health emergency.

Health Minister Khalid Ait Taleb said the national strategy to combat diseases and influenza caused by flying and crawling insects and wandering species is based on a holistic approach based on prevention, and includes the fight against vectors in coordination with various interventions.

The strategy also includes the early diagnosis of diseases, while sensitizing employees in the health sector to these diseases which are linked to internal risk factors based on human health risk assessment, laboratory diagnosis , public health measures, and coordination with the animal health sector for early monitoring of cases detected in animals.

In an answer to a parliamentary question from the People’s Movement (MP) group whose MoroccoLatestNews holds a copy, the Ministry of Health pointed out that this strategy has enabled the elimination of a group of diseases such as malaria, trachoma and schistosomiasis, and the development of health programs for emerging diseases that pose a threat for public health such as Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS), Pandemic Influenza, Mers Cove, Ebola and Zika, with emphasis on effective management, early and ongoing surveillance and preparedness of response mechanisms.

The Ministry of Health and Social Protection also relies on a national disease vector control program, and adopts an integrated approach to manage their control, involving all relevant actors, he said.

According to Khalid Ait Taleb, this approach was adopted following the joint decision n° 1814 of November 24, 2014, signed between the sectors of health, agriculture, interior and environment, according to which a committee national and regional and provincial interministerial committees for integrated management of disease vector control have been set up.

This approach is based on the prioritization of general hygiene and sanitary disinfection and the elimination of all black spots. If the use of pesticides is necessary, pesticides authorized by the Ministry of Health and Welfare should be used, the government official said.

Also, the Ministry of Health works to supervise and motivate regional and provincial committees to contribute to the control of leishmaniasis diseases, based on continuous monitoring and appropriate control of the sandfly that transmits the disease, a continuous monitoring of the stations where the host rats of the disease are present, in addition to appropriate control of stray rats and dogs carrying the disease at the level of endemic circles, while working on general cleaning operations, in particular sanitary and l elimination of all blackheads, as well as the use of pesticides approved against insects and rats.

The same strategy is based on the fight against arthropod virus diseases (such as Zika) transmitted by a type of mosquito ” invasive which was declared a health emergency by the WHO in 2016.

The ministry conducted national field research that confirmed the existence of this type of vector, and worked to develop a new system for monitoring this insect at all air, sea and land crossing points. , based on national scientific expertise, while work on this system will begin during the current year.

The strategy also includes the fight against malaria and schistosomiasis, since the ministry confirmed that malaria has been eradicated and that Morocco has obtained the WHO certificate for the eradication of endemic malaria, thanks to the concerted efforts of all stakeholders and members of management committees for disease vector control. As for schistosomiasis, the ministry is currently preparing a file to obtain the same certificate, the official pointed out.

Thus, Khalid Ait Taleb confided that the risk of entering these diseases remains possible due to the presence of several factors at the national level. To prevent this, the ministry constantly monitors the breeding points and stations of mosquitoes that transmit malaria, as well as the locations of snails that cause schistosomiasis, and monitors and tracks the susceptibility and resistance of mosquitoes carrying certain pesticides used in public health, as well as carrying out interventions to combat these vectors by various means, in particular via biological, physical and chemical control, without harming health and the environment.



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