Global Health Issue: Malaria Disease

The health of the nation is the major concern of the modern healthcare sector. Being one of the pillars of contemporary society, the system monitors the situation related to various diseases with the primary aim to introduce appropriate treatment or measures to decrease risks that come from a particular issue. The complexity of the given task is preconditioned by the fact that the observation of the epidemiological situation in the country and various tendencies is not enough.

Citizens might travel and face new risks in many regions. At the same time, migration processes precondition the appearance of some viruses or diseases in the country. That is why there are multiple global health issues that should be controlled by the healthcare sector to provide appropriate protection to people. Malaria as one of the diseases that affect adults throughout all their lifespan can be considered one of them.

Malaria is an extremely complex and life-threatening disease that endangers millions of people across the globe. It has been known since ancient times as many people died from it having no potent treatment. Today, the disease remains a global health concern because of its ability to affect individuals regardless of their health status and significantly deteriorate the quality of their lives.

At the same time, malaria becomes one of the barriers that might limit people in their ability to travel or live in various areas (WHO, 2018). For this reason, the consideration of the illness, its epidemiology, the main ways of transmitting, and basic approaches to treatment becomes the critical task for the modern healthcare sector responsible for the improvement of the health of the nation through the elimination of all existing threats.

Malaria mainly occurs in tropical and subtropical regions. These might include Africa, Asia, and Oceania, South, and Central America (Moss et al., 2015). The wide breadth of the disease preconditions its critical importance for the healthcare sector. Malaria in humans occurs due to one of the four parasites which are Plasmodium falciparum, P. vivax, P. ovale, and P. malariae (Moss et al., 2015).

The disease is transmitted by the bite of an insect, precisely an infective female Anopheles mosquito (Moss et al., 2015). However, the transmission is also possible via blood because of the blood transfusion, by using the same needle, or transplacentally (Moss et al., 2015). The main symptoms include fever, tiredness, headaches, vomiting, yellow skin, coma, and death (Moss et al., 2015). Insects mentioned above inject sporozoites that affect liver cells and continue their evolution invading red blood cells and destroying them. If left untreated, the disease continues to evolve and preconditions the death of a patient.

In accordance with the latest statistics, malaria is one of the most dangerous diseases and health problems as it causes more than 200 million cases every year (WHO, 2018). At the same time, WHO (2018) reports that there are 655,000 deaths because of the disease annually. A total of 106 countries face a high risk of transmitting malaria infection (WHO, 2018). The given scope of the problem evidences the necessity of the appropriate measures and interventions to monitor the situation and reduce the incidence of the disease. From the socioeconomic and cultural perspective, people living in poor conditions and undeveloped states face a higher risk of being infected by malaria (WHO, 2018).

Due to the peculiarities of its spread, there are more individuals with a low level of income who suffer from the illness today (WHO, 2018). In such a way, it becomes an important sociocultural factor that impacts nations globally and results in the deterioration of the epidemiological situation.

Another critical aspect of the given health concern is that malaria might cause a number of life-threatening complications. Patients suffering from the disease face a high risk of the liver or kidneys failure (Moss et al., 2015). Destruction of the red blood cells might cause anemia (Moss et al., 2015). At the same time, accumulation of fluid in the lungs might result in pulmonary edema; there is also a high risk of critical damage to blood vessels of the brain (WHO, 2018).

Finally, it remains an extremely infectious disease that should be monitored. The main intervention regarding malaria is the improvement of social and economic conditions of people living in potentially risky areas as one of the preventive measures. People who move to these areas are prescribed pills to prevent being affected (Treatment of malaria (guidelines for clinicians), 2013). At the same time, treatment depends on the type of infecting parasite and is active against the parasite forms in the blood. The medicines include chloroquine, atovaquone-proguanil, quinine, and atovaquone (Treatment of malaria (guidelines for clinicians), 2013). Their use can help to treat patients and improve their health.

Finally, interprofessional collaboration becomes a key to the successful struggle against malaria. It presupposes that close cooperation between health departments of various states and the exchange of reports about the current spread of the disease, its prevalence, new cases, and forms (Moss et al., 2015). At the same time, regions with the complex epidemiological situation should be given special attention. Health workers should warn people about the state of the disease in these regions to prevent people from visiting risky locations and stop the further spread of the disease.

References

Moss, W., Dorsey, G., Mueller, I., Laufer, D., Krogstad, D., Vinetz, J., … Kazura, J. (2015). Malaria epidemiology and control within the international centers of excellence for malaria research. The American Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene, 93(3), 5-15. Web.

Treatment of malaria (guidelines for clinicians). (2013). Web.

WHO. (2018). Malaria. Web.