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Vector Control Requires Community-Centered Responses, ‘Planetary Health Approach’

The Lancet Global Health: Vector control: time for a planetary health approach
Editorial Board

“…Vector control … has had a dramatic effect on infectious disease epidemiology since the beginning of the 20th century. … Yet it is not achieving its full potential. … [The Global Vector Control Response for 2017-2030] sets an ambitious global goal of reducing mortality due to vector-borne diseases by 75 percent and of case incidence by 60 percent relative to 2016, centering on four pillars of action: strengthening intersectoral and intrasectoral action and collaboration, enhancement of vector surveillance and monitoring and evaluation of interventions, scaling up and integration of tools and approaches, and engagement and mobilization of communities. … However, the final pillar of the response is perhaps the most crucial. Community ownership and direction are indispensable when it comes to the uptake of simple tools in hard-to-reach areas. … Eliminating a vector-borne disease is not the same as eliminating a vector, and indeed mosquitoes, ticks, bugs, flies, and snails — much as public health types might loathe them — have their place in the wider ecosystem to which we all belong. The next stage in our battle with these small but deadly creatures will involve commitment by countries to a community-centered, situation-specific, interdisciplinary approach encompassing urban design, forestry, aquatic ecology, entomology, agriculture, and water and sanitation: a planetary health approach, if ever one was needed” (June 2017).

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