Over the last century, classical environmental interventions like improved housing, land reclamation, larviciding, and irrigation and hydroelectric systems have led to the eradication of malaria in the United States, Europe, the Mediterranean region, and parts of Southeast Asia. These classical methods are simple, economical, and durable. To many, they represent durable methods to fight malaria in Africa that should complement the use of insecticides, especially with the recurring development of insecticide resistance.
Dr. Bill Jobin joined us for an expert panel discussion on this topic the first week of April 2013. Jobin is a public health engineer with degrees from MIT in hydraulics and sanitary engineering and a doctorate in tropical public health from Harvard. He has worked for over 50 years, starting in Puerto Rico with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, with the World Health Organization on the Blue Nile Health Project, and continuing on various health impact assessments of large water and energy projects in the tropics for the World Bank and the U.S. government. He helped start the U.S. President’s Malaria Initiative, and in 2009 published a report in the WHO Bulletin. He’s authored two technical books, more than 50 articles, and more recently a series of technical monographs.
This discussion outlines some important steps in further promotion of classical malaria control methods involving physical, biological and community approaches. Although not everyone agreed on the value of the classical methods, participants were emphatic about the value of community participation as a basic requirement for success, no matter what control methods were involved.