Water Sanitation Health

Vector control: Methods for use by individuals and communities

Prepared by Jan A. Rozendaal

vector control cover

Diseases transmitted by arthropods and freshwater snails are among the most common causes of illness and premature death in tropical and subtropical countries and, to a lesser extent, in temperate zones also. In addition to their direct effects on health, such diseases - which include malaria, filariasis, leishmaniasis, schistosomiasis, dengue and trypanosomiasis - hinder economic development, as a result of lost working hours and the high costs of treating those affected and of vector control.

Large-scale campaigns for vector control are often unworkable for both financial and practical reasons, as well as being potentially damaging to the environment. For these reasons, attention has shifted to methods that can be applied by individuals and communities. This manual provides practical information on methods that are suitable for self-protection by families and communities in both rural and urban areas and that require only limited involvement by health services. In general these methods are relatively simple and cheap, do not require much training and, if properly applied, are safe for the user and the environment.

The manual provides practical information on all major disease vectors and pests: mosquitos and other biting Diptera, tsetse flies, triatomine bugs, bedbugs, fleas, lice, ticks, mites, cockroaches, house-flies, water fleas and freshwater snails. For each group of vectors, information is provided on biology, public health importance and control measures. Chapters on house-spraying with residual insecticides and the safe use of pesticides are also included.

This manual is principally intended for health workers and auxiliary staff working with people at district and community level, as well as for health planners, aid organizations and those working in refugee camps.

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Publishing and ordering information

©1997, WHO
ISBN 92 4 154 494 5
Order No. 1150448
Order on line