Last Updated: 20/12/2023

Ifakara Masterclass Edition 26- Two Billion Mosquito Nets & Counting: A MasterClass with Prof. Christian Lengeler

Published: 24/06/2021

Two Billion Mosquito Nets & Counting

The 26th edition of the masterclass hosted by Fredros Okumu from Ifakara Health Institute (IHI) and Sheila Ogoma from Clinton Health Access Initiative(CHAI) features Professor Christian Lengeler who is the unit head at the Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute and Professor of Epidemiology at the University of Basel in Switzerland. For the past 30 years, his research efforts have centered on the epidemiology and control of tropical diseases, with a strong focus on malaria. He has been involved in the development of insecticide treated nets (ITN) as a malaria control tool and was responsible for pioneering many developments in large-scale vector control in sub-Saharan Africa. Since 1999, he has been involved in the establishment and implementation of the national ITN program in Tanzania.

The conversation dives straight into the public health value of Insecticide treted nets(ITNs). Experience over the past 20 years has shown ITNs to be a promising intervention for reducing the risk of malaria infection in areas of both stable and unstable transmission. During this time, ITN implementation has evolved. The main phases have been:

•Private sector sales of untreated nets before the development of ITNs as a new technology;

•ITN efficacy and effectiveness trials;

•Early ITN projects;

•Moving from projects to programmes (“going to scale”).

Guidelines for testing long-lasting insecticidal nets (LNs) were first published by WHO in 2005. The original guidelines were designed for pyrethroid-treated nets and were based on the state of knowledge and LN technology at the time. Considerable experience in testing LNs has since been gained. Furthermore, as pyrethroid resistance increases and threatens to undermine the efficacy of the current generation of pyrethroid-treated LNs, it is expected that LNs containing new insecticides and/or synergists will become available for use in the near future.

The overall journey to mass campaigns and equity is explored together with use of ITNs alongside other malaria interventions. Moreover, PBO nets and the functional life of bed nets was discussed followed by a brief exchange on the future of ITNs and the role of private sector on mosquito nets.

Published: 24/06/2021

IHI 26

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