Malaria is one of the leading communicable diseases in Ethiopia affecting the health of people. About 75% of the total area of the country and more than 68% of the total population is at risk of infection. The aim of this study was to determine the five year trends of malaria (2012-2016) and to assess the prevalence and associated risk factors of malaria infection among patients visiting Goljota health center from September to December 2017.Retrospectivedata (January 2012 – December 2016) in the Health Center was extracted. Institution based, cross sectional study was carried out. Finger-prick blood samples were collected from 422 malaria suspected patients, smears were prepared. A pre-tested structured questionnaire was used to assess the socio demographic/economic and environmental factors influencing transmission of the parasite from each participant. Descriptive statistics, univariate and multivariate analysis were used. Statistical significance was defined at P-values less than 0.05.The retrospective data revealed that out of 8341 malaria suspected patients 1286(15.4%) malaria slide were positive cases in the past-five years from 2012-2016 with 51.32% P. falciparum, 39.73% P. vivax and 8.94%mixed infection. In the current institutional based cross sectional survey, the overall prevalence of malaria was 13.03%. Plasmodium species identified in this study was P.vivax (60%) followed by P. falciparum (23.6 %) and mixed infection (16.4%). Univariate analyses revealed that household with lower-income(<500), lack of utilization of bed nets, IRS didn’t spray in the past 12 months, the presence of breeding site nearer to the house and the presence of opening on the wall were significantly associated with malaria infection. In multivariate analysis factors such as household with lower income level (<500 ETB), lack of utilization of bed net ,the presence breeding site nearer to house and the presence of opening on the wall were significantly associated with malaria positivity with p-value < 0.05. IRS and other socio-demographics characteristics were not significantly associated with malaria infection. The higher prevalence could be the result of several factors as explained in this study. Therefore effective malaria control measures should be implemented in order to reduce the prevalence of malaria in the study area.
Keywords: Malaria, Plasmodium, Prevalence, Risk factors.