“One day I became very sick” — Malaria care at the local level in Burundi

Posted on June 24, 2014 by Jessica Nipp Hacker
Jessica Nipp Hacker

​Last week in this blog post, we met Filip Ndabihaze, who is a Community Health Worker in Burundi.  Through the Lutheran malaria program, which is supported by your gifts to the ELCA Malaria Campaign, Filip gained training and expertise in malaria, and has been able to provide one-on-one malaria care to the people in his community.

One of the community members who has benefitted from Filip’s advice and care is Mediatrice Nyogusabwa, who lives in Mwiruzi village in Burundi.

Mediatrice and Filip for web

[Photo: Mediatrice Nyogusabwa poses with Filip Ndabihaze, the Community Health Worker who helped her to get treatment when she had malaria.]

Mediatrice recalls, “One day I became very sick.  I had vomiting, dizziness, a high temperature and eventually I lost consciousness.”

Worried about her safety, Mediatrice’s family called their local Community Health Worker, Filip.  They explained to Filip the symptoms that Mediatrice had been experiencing.  Filip recognized the symptoms of severe malaria, and advised the family that Mediatrice should be brought to the health center right away for malaria testing and treatment.

Because Mediatrice was unconscious and unable to walk, the family devised a traditional stretcher, and with Filip’s help, carried Mediatrice to the nearby Health Center.

“At the health center,” Mediatrice explains, “they did the rapid diagnostic test and it came out positive for malaria.  They gave me medicine; both an injection and pills.”

Thanks to Filip’s good advice and his prompt care, Mediatrice recovered completely from her bout with malaria.

Mediatrice for web

[Photo: Mediatrice, now healthy, is grateful for the work of the Lutheran malaria program in Burundi!]

Now, whenever they become ill, Mediatrice and her family call Filip right away. Thanks to the training and resources provided by the Lutheran malaria program in Burundi, they have access to life-changing malaria care in their very own village.