By Matthew O. Geldard.
One of the most pressing policy issues of the modern era is how to improve public health in the world’s poorest regions. Of particular concern are those diseases spread by mosquitos: the World Health Organisation estimates a total of 96 million cases of dengue and, in 2017 alone, 219 million cases of malaria. Policies targeting such vector-borne diseases (VBDs) represent nothing new. However, there seems to be a continuing inability to move the agenda from one of disease reduction to eradication: clearly, current policy initiatives are not proving effective enough.
This report aims to tackle this issue by outlining the problems associated with current policies and how they can be addressed through epidemiological innovation, with need to not only improve the efficacy of such policies, but also their cost-effectiveness and sustainability. Two innovative policies will be presented: that of manipulating the urban environment to reduce mosquito habitat and of harnessing predation pressure to better regulate mosquito populations.