Care for Malaria

Caregivers appropriately manage care for signs and symptoms of malaria for children

Prompt diagnosis and appropriate care for malaria could prevent over 300,000 deaths of children under five each year.1 Fact Sheet: World Malaria Report 2015
World Health Organization
This is an occasional, often seasonal, behavior that needs to be practiced within 24 to 48 hours of the onset of suspected symptoms.

Key Points from Global Research

  • Quality provider care, accurate diagnosis, treatment and counseling ensure caregivers respond better and return as needed because they feel respected and have confidence in a provider’s ability to help their children.
  • Easy and continual access to qualified providers and medicines encourages caregivers to seek care within 24 hours of a fever, instead of waiting until their child’s condition worsens.
  • Support from community members assures that caregivers can seek care and fully complete prescribed treatments.

Behavior Profile Sample: Care for Malaria

A Behavior Profile is a summary analysis of each behavior. This sample draws from global evidence and illustrates the result of using the Create Behavior Profiles Tool to analyze factors, supporting actors and strategies and to ensure logical pathways exist between strategies proposed and factors related to the practice of the behavior. This sample may be used as a starting point or reference for creating country-specific Behavior Profiles.

Create Behavior Profiles

Improve maternal and child survival
Caregivers appropriately manage care for signs and symptoms of malaria for children
Among children under age five with fever in the two weeks preceding the survey, percentage for whom advice or treatment was sought from a health facility or provider

Behavior Analysis



What steps are needed to practice this behavior?
  1. Recognize signs and symptoms of malaria
  2. Decide to seek care
  3. Mobilize transport, resources, and logistics to get to a qualified provider who can test properly for malaria
  4. Obtain diagnosis from a qualified provider
  5. Obtain treatment based on diagnosis of the provider
  6. Adhere to full course of prescribed treatment

Click on any box
        to see the pathwaysA pathway illustrates how elements in the Behavior Profile are linked. When read from right to left, a pathway highlights how strategies are expected to address the factors to enable adoption of the Accelerator Behavior.  
        of the behavior.


What factors may prevent or support practice of this behavior? These should be analyzed for each country context.
Accessibility: Caregivers cannot access health facilities because facilities are too far
Accessibility: Caregivers cannot receive care because malaria prevention, diagnosis and treatment supplies are unavailable
Accessibility: Caregivers do not access formal health facilities because they exhaust all local options first
Service Provider Competencies: Caregivers cannot obtain proper diagnosis because providers do not follow National Malaria Case Management guidelines
Service Provider Competencies: Caregivers do not seek the care of providers because they may be poorly treated
Service Experience: Caregivers do not seek care because health facilities may be poorly equipped and maintained
Norms: Caregivers do not seek care because fever is considered normal and is accepted
Attitudes and Beliefs: Caregivers do not seek care for fever because they feel treatment is unnecessary or ineffective
Knowledge: Caregivers do not seek care because they are unaware that prompt diagnosis and treatment can prevent symptoms and complications of and death from malaria


Who must support the practice of this behavior?
Providers: Prescribe anti-malarial per the national surveillance guidelines for all positive RDT results
Providers: Diagnose malaria using rapid diagnostic tests for all suspected malaria cases
Providers: Counsel caregivers on severity of malaria, importance of diagnosis, treatment, danger signs, and when and where to seek care during all interactions
Logistics Personnel: Procure sufficient stock of malaria diagnostics and supplies
Managers: Seek innovative ways to provide client-friendly services that are closer to the clients
Managers: Conduct regular supervisory visits to ensure that providers are following approved guidelines and facilities are properly equipped and maintained
Community Leaders: Support social accountability structures to ensure facilities are properly equipped, maintained, and provide quality services
Community and Religious Leaders: Emphasize the severity of malaria, importance of seeking care for fever, and efficacy of diagnosis and treatment options


How might we focus our efforts based on this analysis?
Enabling Environment
Financing: Establish transportation systems and transport within the communities to ensure access to care
Systems, Products and Services
Supply Chain: Set up effective supply chain and quality control systems to public and private sectors to ensure diagnostic tools and treatment for other febrile illnesses are available
Quality Improvement: Train providers to adhere to test results and ensure treatment as per national guidelines, and explain protocol to caregivers
Quality Improvement: Equip health workers and community health workers with locally tailored behavior-centered job aids
Quality Improvement: Emphasize the importance of respectful quality care by providers during pre-service and in service training to ensure clients receive quality treatment
Quality Improvement: Develop facilities equipment and maintenance checklist for use by managers and providers to improve health care facilities
Demand and Use
Communication: Implement SBCC activities to educate caregivers on malaria symptoms, danger signs, severity, etc.
Collective Engagement: Conduct community mobilization activities for caregiver and caregiver support systems around malaria care seeking, diagnosis, treatment and counseling to promote prompt careseeking

Global Status of Accelerator Behavior

Among children under age five with fever in the two weeks preceding the survey, percentage for whom advice or treatment was sought from a health facility or provider

Demographic and Health Survey, Malaria Indicator Survey, The DHS Program Indicator Data API, The Demographic and Health Surveys (DHS) Program

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