LAGOS, Dec. 21 (Xinhua) -- Up to 48 million Long Lasting Insecticide Nets (LLIN) have been distributed in 34 states this year in Nigeria, Africa's most populous country.
Program Assistant for the National Malaria Control Program (NMCP) Festus Okoh released the figure on Friday in Lagos, Nigeria's commercial hub.
The distribution is part of the targeted 64 million nets. "We will start the distribution of the nets in the remaining states by January, 2013," Okoh said.
"Hopefully, by March, we would have finished the distribution of 64 million nets which is our target for 36 states and Federal Capital Territory (FCT)," he said.
The official quoted the World Health Organization (WHO) as saying that the use of Insecticide Treated Net (ITN) was one of the most cost-effective interventions against malaria.
Okoh said 2010 Nigeria Malaria Indicator Survey Report showed that 42 percent of households in Nigeria owned at least one treated nets.
"In terms of usage, about 29 percent of children under five and 34 percent of pregnant women slept under LLIN in the night before the survey," he added.
According to him, the use of the net had been quite effective in controlling malaria, adding that other measures should be adopted to complement this measure.
Malaria is a mosquito-borne infectious disease caused by a eukaryotic protist of the genus Plasmodium.