Environmental management for malaria control: knowledge and practices in Mvomero, Tanzania.
Environmental conditions play an important role in the transmission of malaria; therefore, regulating these conditions can help to reduce disease burden. Environmental management practices for disease control can be implemented at the community level to complement other malaria control methods. This study assesses current knowledge and practices related to mosquito ecology and environmental management for malaria control in a rural, agricultural region of Tanzania. Household surveys were conducted with 408 randomly selected respondents from 10 villages and qualitative data were collected through focus group discussions and in-depth interviews. Results show that respondents are well aware of the links between mosquitoes, the environment, and malaria. Most respondents stated that cleaning the environment around the home, clearing vegetation around the home, or draining stagnant water can reduce mosquito populations, and 63% of respondents reported performing at least one of these techniques to protect themselves from malaria. It is clear that many respondents believe that these environmental management practices are effective malaria control methods, but the actual efficacy of these techniques for controlling populations of vectors or reducing malaria prevalence in the varying ecological habitats in Mvomero is unknown. Further research should be conducted to determine the effects of different environmental management practices on both mosquito populations and malaria transmission in this region, and increased participation in effective techniques should be promoted.
Randell, HF; Dickinson, KL; Shayo, EH; Mboera, LEG; Kramer, RA
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