6 Sep 2013

Big rise in cases of malaria in Chad

12:39 pm on 6 September 2013

An emergency operation is underway in the African nation of Chad after an escalation in cases of malaria.

Medecins Sans Frontieres said the number of reported new cases rose from 1228 in the first week of August to 14,021 by the end of the month.

The BBC reports cases of the disease, which is borne by mosquitoes, peak during the rainy season from July to November.

''More than 80% of people who are coming for consultations are coming because they are infected with malaria, normally its 30% - 40% at this time of year,'' said MSF advisor Dr Turid Piening.

"It is now the top illness diagnosed in our clinics and that is unusual for this area."

According to MSF, a quarter of all deaths in Chad are attributed to malaria and it is the most common cause of death for children.