Malaria is a major cause of illness and death in Nigeria. It is also a significant drain on its economy and a major financial burden to the poor. Most Nigerians do not get the right treatment.    When someone has a fever  they  believe  to  be malaria,  they  usually  go  to  a private patent medicine vendor  (PMV)  for anti-malarial drugs  (AMDs). Although PMVs are the most common source of malaria treatment in Nigeria, little is known about them.  It is important to  understand  the  poorly regulated market  in which  they work because patients do  not  know  what  they  are  getting.  This is a lot of substandard and fake drugs around. Also, the malaria parasite has become highly resistant  to  the medicines that  were  used  in  the  past.  The government has recently changed its guidelines and recommends that people use artemisinin-combined therapy (ACT).  But it is not clear how this change in policy has affected the market that provides malaria treatment  for  most Nigerians.   

Oladimeji Oladepo, Salami Kabiru et al; March 2008 · No: 01