The early diagnosis and treatment (EDAT) system has saved lives by significantly reducing malaria cases in an area plagued by mosquitoes.
Introduced in 2006 by BP and a range of local health agencies, the programme won the 2018 United Nations Public Service Award (UNPSA) under the category of ‘reaching the poorest and most vulnerable through inclusive services and partnerships.’
Teluk Bintuni is located in the western part of Papua Barat and is home to the BP-operated Tangguh liquefied natural gas project. Some 50% of Teluk Bintuni is mangrove forests providing perfect conditions for mosquito breeding.
With the prevalence of mosquitos in the area, malaria was killing 114.9 in 1000 people in 2009. Since the introduction of the malaria programme, which has given communities in remote places convenient and affordable malaria checks and treatments, the morbidity rate dropped to 2.7 per 1000 people in 2016. The target is to reduce malaria morbidity rate to less than 1 per 1,000 people by 2020.
UNPSA is one of the most prestigious international recognitions of an excellence public service at global level and aims to promote and reward innovations in public service in support of the UN’s Sustainable and Development Goals (SDGs) and the principle of leaving no one behind by 2030.
In a statement, the UN said that the programme had “successfully raised awareness and education amongst the community on malaria identification, prevention and treatment; trained villagers as malaria health workers, repackaged malaria drugs in a more convenient and user-friendly manner and ensured integrated quality assurance.”