SMC is administered as follows:
- Children aged three to 59 months living in areas with high seasonal malaria receive a treatment course of SPAQ each month, for up to five months. This is done during the period of highest malaria transmission, which often coincides with the rainy season.
- Each month, one dose of SP and the first dose of AQ are given, on the first day of administering the intervention, by a healthcare worker or trained community health volunteer. The second and third doses of AQ are given to the caregiver to administer for two subsequent days, thereafter.
- This process is repeated each month for up to five months of the year.
The treatments provide a high degree of protection, offering an efficacy of about 90%, for up to four weeks after receiving the treatment. To ensure that eligible children receive their medicines, community health workers go from door to door administering the first dose. This method has been shown to improve coverage in comparison to the fixed-point distribution method where families are to take children to a central location to receive SMC.