Urban control of malaria should target breeding sites

By David Njagi

A technology which has been shown to be effective in large scale control of malaria and which is similar to one that the Cuban government promised to introduce in Kenya is finally in use.
The technology which is said to be useful in urban control of malaria as well as in areas that have invested in irrigation schemes is understood to have been registered with the Pest Control Products Board (PCPB), but few Kenyans knew about it.
According to the PCPB updated list of registered pest control products in Kenya, Bacticide WP, a bio pesticide product that is packaged as a powder that can dissolve in water has been in use in the country since last year.
David Thuku, the managing director at Insecta Limited, says the technology which uses bio pesticides to kill mosquitoes at their breeding sites, has also been introduced to the Ministry of Public Health and Sanitation.
By mixing about 0.5 grams of the product, Thuku says Bacticide WP is already in supply in the country, and is able to contain mosquitoes breeding within a radius of one square kilometer covered by water, through a process known as larviciding.
“In areas where the product has been used in the country, the feedback about its effectiveness has been very positive,” says Thuku. “It is very useful especially in urban control of malaria in residential areas living near contaminated water bodies.”
Larviciding, according to Dr. Elizabeth Juma of the Division of Malaria Control in Kenya, is a process that taps into the potency of bio pesticides to kill mosquito larvae at their breeding sites and is the most effective method known to control the disease, especially on a large scale basis.

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About seventysixthstreet

Science and human rights journalist, Kenya
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