Schlumberger

Small Bite, Big Threat

Date: 04/25/2014

Global malaria prevention initiatives raise awareness

The World Health Organization (WHO) reports that there are approximately 627,000 malaria fatalities every year. Malaria is a life-threatening parasitic disease that remains a significant health issue faced by people living in or traveling to one of the many malaria-endemic countries. The disease is spread by infected mosquitoes that, upon biting, transmit malaria parasites to humans.

Preventing malaria

With proper protection and early diagnosis, malaria is both preventable and treatable. According to WHO, worldwide efforts to prevent malaria have saved an estimated 3.3 million lives over the past decade, reducing malaria mortality rates by 42% globally and 49% in the African region. 

Malaria is a significant health issue for Schlumberger, a company that operates in 85 countries, many of them in malarial zones. In 2003, the company launched its malaria prevention program, which has been successful in reducing malaria-related incidences among its workforce and their dependents. Prevention measures include malaria online training, curative kits, and use of four-point impregnated bed nets. The program, which is continuously re-evaluated and updated, helps contribute to the global efforts to control malaria by protecting employees and their families.

Raising awareness

Initiated by WHO, April 25 is designated as World Malaria Day, bringing attention to the disease and spotlighting the continued importance and efforts of individuals, governments, research and academic institutions, and other organizations to prevent malaria. The 2014 theme is “Invest in the Future: Defeat Malaria.”

As part of Schlumberger ongoing malaria prevention efforts, for the 2014 World Malaria Day, the company has organized awareness-raising workshops for employees and their families in malaria-prone regions, such as Africa, Latin America, and Asia.

These workshops are facilitated by trained volunteers as well as Schlumberger HSE team members, employees, their spouses, and members of local communities. The workshops use materials and activities adapted from the company’s malaria prevention program.

Fighting the bite

At the sessions, participants gain knowledge about malaria, for example, that the disease is transmitted by female mosquitoes that bite mostly at night, and attendees also learn how to recognize the symptoms. The workshops explain the importance of eliminating mosquito breeding sites, for example stagnant water, and taking mosquito bite precautions. Bite-prevention tips include sleeping under an impregnated bed net, using insect repellent and wearing suitable clothing when outdoors at night such as long sleeves t-shirts, trousers and light color clothes.

Improving education and awareness

The interactive workshops include activities such as a series of illustrated drawings to find ways of protecting someone from mosquito bites. Workshop participants are also encouraged to share these important malaria prevention messages with their families and friends.

With ongoing education about malaria, including how it can be prevented and treated, employees and their families are empowered to boost prevention measures in their homes and communities, which will help to diminish the disease.

Related services and products

 

Malaria Curative Kit

Malaria Kit

Reducing the risks of malaria through curative kits provides the company’s employees and their families with immediate diagnosis and treatment.