We have posted news on the corporate social responsibility efforts of major gold mining companies in Ghana.Â A supervisory visit to health facilities in the southern part of Burkina Faso yielded another perspective on gold mining and malaria.
Along the road one saw individuals engaged in mining by hand.Â These persons had set up their own camps with ad hoc housing.Â Local health workers were concerned about the potential for transmission of sexually transmitted diseases, but there are also malaria concerns.
The miners are essentially migrant workers.Â It is questionable as such that they would have access to insecticide treated bednets.Â As a non-indigenous population one also wonders about their access to appropriate malaria treatment services.
Finally there is concern that in the current rainy season whether the surface mining operations might have some impact on mosquito breeding sites.
Local ‘wildcat’ mining for gold in Zamfara State, Nigeria has had a devastating effect of poisoning local children.Â It is not clear how such operations benefit the national or local economy, and clearly the health threats are numerous.Â The malaria elimination environment is certainly complicated.