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Malaria Research and Treatment
Volume 2018, Article ID 6124321, 11 pages
https://doi.org/10.1155/2018/6124321
Research Article

Modelling Trends of Climatic Variability and Malaria in Ghana Using Vector Autoregression

1Department of Mathematics and Statistics, University of Energy and Natural Resources, P.O. Box 214, Sunyani, Ghana
2Office of Deputy Vice Chancellor, Catholic University of Eastern Africa, P.O. Box 62157-00200, Nairobi, Kenya

Correspondence should be addressed to Sylvia Ankamah; hg.ude.rneu@hamakna.aivlys

Received 11 July 2017; Accepted 19 April 2018; Published 29 May 2018

Academic Editor: Sasithon Pukrittayakamee

Copyright © 2018 Sylvia Ankamah et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

Malaria is considered endemic in over hundred countries across the globe. Many cases of malaria and deaths due to malaria occur in Sub-Saharan Africa. The disease is of great public health concern since it affects people of all age groups more especially pregnant women and children because of their vulnerability. This study sought to use vector autoregression (VAR) models to model the impact of climatic variability on malaria. Monthly climatic data (rainfall, maximum temperature, and relative humidity) from 2010 to 2015 were obtained from the Ghana Meteorological Agency while data on malaria for the same period were obtained from the Ghana Health Service. Results of the Granger and instantaneous causality tests led to a conclusion that malaria is influenced by all three climatic variables. The impulse response analyses indicated that the highest positive effect of maximum temperature, relative humidity, and rainfall on malaria is observed in the months of September, March, and October, respectively. The decomposition of forecast variance indicates varying degree of malaria dependence on the climatic variables, with as high as 12.65% of the variability in the trend of malaria which has been explained by past innovations in maximum temperature alone. This is quite significant and therefore, policy-makers should not ignore temperature when formulating policies to address malaria.