Malaria is one of the important diseases which exist in the labor area of the MZ and for that reason the malaria fighting is one of the main issues on which the health care of the MZ is focused.

Malaria cycles
This disease is caused by a unicellular parasite that is transmitted from human to mosquito and visa versa. If a mosquito is infected through a human with sexual form of the parasite the mosquito is able to infect another human. Once in the bloodstream of the human, the parasites nestle in to the red blood cells and destroy these if it has reproduced. By infecting the new red blood cells again and again, arises the anemia and the parts of the broken blood cells cloy the capillaries, by which the so called organ malaria arises;. The most important problem then, is the cerebral malaria due to dead brain tissue that cannot be provided with blood because the blood vessels are closed. The fever comes up by the substance that elaborates free if the reproduction cycle is completed and the red blood cells burst. If malaria is not diagnosed and treated on time it can be fatal. There are three types of malaria in Suriname, namely: the falciparium, vivax and the malaria. Although the only the first mentioned is potentially deadly, the other two types can make a person very ill.

Therapy
Regarding the treatments the MZ constantly follows the instructions of the national malaria board and the research to the affectivity of new medicaments and diagnostic possibilities in comparison with the existing schemes is continually made in the teamwork with the “Diakonessenhuis” and the Bureau for Public Health. If malaria is treated on time than this disease can be cured for 100%.

Prevention
The essential thing is to naturally prevent the disease. This can be by taking the so-called malaria prophylaxes in combination with protective measures as soon as one goes past the south of the degree of latitude, which goes over Zanderij.
The use of malaria prophylaxes alone is insufficient and protective measures must always be taken. These measures are: wear clothes which cover the body (long sleeves and trousers), between sunset and sunrise, rather a light color as this attracts the mosquito’s less. Smear the uncovered parts of the body with mosquito repellents. The active ingredients as DEET and citronella in these repellents have shown to mask the smell of the human body by which the mosquito cannot localize the human. Sleep under a bed net that is impregnated with an insecticide. There is a little sense in a non-impregnated bed net, because the mosquito will prick right through it if a body part lays against the bed net while sleeping.

What to do at returning from the malaria area?
It is not necessary to do an examination after a few days from returning from the interior days if there are no complaints. If there are complaints that seem like the flu within three months after returning, it is necessary to immediately make a test. Notify your family doctor that a malaria area has been visited so that the test for malaria can be arranged.

Malaria conduction MZ
Annually more then one hundred thousand patients are checked-up for the malaria by the MZ and ultimately seven to twelve thousands prove to have malaria (see graphic). The health assistants at the policlinics of the MZ treat the major part of these patients. Only 10-20 patients persons have to be transported to the city because specialized care is still necessary. It almost always concerns patients who have waited too long before visiting the policlinic and in the meantime the cerebral malaria has developed. Malaria microscopists with the help of the so-called rapid test strip locally make the diagnoses. To guarantee the quality of the diagnostic, regularly a control according to international standards take place. All health workers are also trained frequently in-service. Prevention instructions are frequently given to the local population and the local women organizations are supported with the help of different projects at the production and impregnating of bed nets.