Vector borne diseases are one of the major causes of death in developing countries. They are also diseases of poverty, responsible for major economic burdens through disability, death of principal earners and missed educational opportunities for children and young adults, keeping poor people poor.
These diseases, which are all principally transmitted in and around the home, are best controlled by a combination of vector control, drugs and vaccines. In contrast to recent progress on drug and vaccine development, little attention has been given to vector control and most technologies are at least 30 years old.
Where vector control has been consistently applied in the past, the results have been dramatic, especially with early efforts to control malaria by spraying the inside surfaces of houses with pesticides, known as Interior Residual Spraying (IRS).
Taiwan, where malaria was once a major killer, has now been free of the transmission of the disease for forty years. Conversely, where IRS programmes have been reduced or eliminated, diseases have increased and in some cases re-emerged. However, the cost of insecticide treatments is prohibitive and there are some concerns over the safety of older generation insecticides as well as the increasing resistance of mosquitoes to pyrethroid insecticides.
The failure to develop new pesticides to counteract these problems has directly increased vector borne disease transmission. The lack of accurate information and integrated decision support systems on which to base control applications of existing insecticides wastes money and increases the likelihood of resistance, making the problem even worse.
IVCC's new anti-malaria insecticides will provide a vital element of the fight to eradicate malaria once and for all. The newly developed Disease Data Management System (DDMS) is already becoming a useful tool for many organisations working in disease control. Read more about DDMS here
What is Vector Control? Watch the video below: