Vectors are living organisms that can transmit infectious diseases between humans or from animals to humans. Mosquitoes are the best known disease vector. Others include ticks, flies, sand flies, fleas, triatomine bugs and some freshwater aquatic snails.
Vector-borne diseases are infections transmitted by infected arthropod species, such as mosquitoes, ticks, triatomine bugs, sandflies, and blackflies1. Arthropod vectors are cold-blooded (ectothermic) and thus especially sensitive to climatic factors.
Common Vector Borne Diseases
Sandfly fever (phelebotoms fever)
Crimean-Congo haemorrhagic fever
Relapsing fever (borreliosis)
Rickettsial diseases (spotted fever and Q fever)
o Plague (transmitted by fleas from rats to humans)
o Rat-bite Fever.
Ministry of Health Mosquito Prevention Checklist
- Keep house plants in damp soil instead of water.
- Keep flower pot saucers dry and avoid over-watering potted plants.
- Empty and scrub flower vases twice weekly.
- Empty and wash pet's water container twice per week.
- Keep refrigerator troughs dry.
- Punch holes in bottom of tins before placing them in the garbage.
- Get rid of all old tyres, tins, bottles, plastic containers, coconut shells and anything in which rain water can settle.
- Cover trash containers to keep out rain water.
- Cover all drums, barrels, tanks, buckets and any other container that is used to store water.
- Repair leaky pipes and outdoor taps.
- Keep grass cut short and shrubbery well trimmed so adult mosquitoes will not hide there.
- Keep drains and ditches clear of weeds and trash so water will drain properly.
- Fill in or drain any low places (puddles, ruts) in yard.
- Clear roof gutters and eaves often to prevent water from settling.
- Use commercially available insecticide.
- Protect yourself from mosquito bites by:
- Using a mosquito repellent that contains DEET
- Sleeping under a mosquito net
- Closing windows before dark
- Opening windows and doors during fogging
- Wearing light coloured clothing and covering your body as much as possible.
What householders should do when fogging is being done?
The following actions are be taken by the public who must co-operate with the Health Department Personnel. Personnel carrying out the will be identified by their identification cards issued by the Health Regional Health Authority.
- Open all doors and windows so that the fog/mist can go through the premises.
- Co-operate with Health Department personnel carrying out the activity, who may need to access your premises to carry out the vector control activities.
- Persons with asthma, or any other respiratory conditions, are asked to protect themselves by staying away from the immediate environment of the "fogging activity'.
- Place a wet towel over your nose and mouth should you be offended by the odour/smell or experience any possible respiratory effects due to the "fogging".
- Kindly inform the health department if you have bees, birds, fishes and other non-target animals (species) that are in the vicinity of the fogging activity, as well as, you must take actions to protect them from exposure to the "fog".
- Take actions around your premises and community to prevent mosquito breeding!!
Parents and caregivers are to give children the following advice:
- DO NOT run behind or close to the vector control vehicle when fogging is taking place.
- DO NOT go directly into an area which is being fogged or that has just been fogged.
NERHA's Vector Mitigation Programme
The North East Region has over the years been affected by its fair share of vector borne diseases and has in place an ongoing but flexible vector mitigation programme.
The goal of the programme is to minimize the risk of transmission of vector borne diseases; for example, Chikungunya and Dengue fever, leptospirois and yellow fever through social mobilization, targeted intervention and enforcement actions.
- Targeting High Risk Communities:
- Strengthening Collaboration with Stakeholders
- Capacity Building among Communities Members:
- Intervention Monitoring of key premises ( worksites, tyre shops, schools, hospitals)
- Taking Enforcement Actions (Issuance of notices on owners or occupants)
- Larvicidal Activities
- Chemical treatment of mosquito adult and larvae
- Conducting Adulticidal Activities (Fogging) Activities :
- Implementation of Sanitation Drives
- Engagement of Temporary Vector Control Workers to support the health team
- Implementation of comprehensive Rodent Control programme in selected facilities and communities