Mosquito-Borne Disease Management Plan

Mosquito-borne diseases may seem such a third-world occurrence, but it is a very real and very current threat to health. Worldwide, around 100 million people die each year from mosquito-borne diseases, while another 700 million get sick from related sicknesses. Many of these diseases are already present in the United States. Those which aren’t already in the US mainland are only a plane ride away.

In response to this threat, the Center for Disease Control and Prevention or CDC has released guidelines for managing an outbreak, entitled Before the Swarm: Guidelines for the Emergency Management of Mosquito-borne Disease Outbreaks.

This document gives various institutions direct and realistic guidance to help them prepare for the emergency management of such outbreaks. The document addresses existing diseases, natural disasters and exotic diseases that could require an emergency response.

CDC built this document on the foundation of the Association of State and Territorial Health Officials’ (ASTHO) report "Public Health Confronts the Mosquito: Developing Sustainable State and Local Mosquito Control Programs." The document provides analysis and recommendations for combating outbreaks in a five-section checklist:

  • Plan Ahead
  • Involve Others
  • Use the Best Science and Data
  • Inform the Public
  • Responding to a Mosquito-Borne Epidemic Emergency

The document explain the importance of careful planning to avert several problems that come with an outbreak. Emergency situations are very challenging and though mosquito control programs are put in place as preventive measures, it cannot respond effectively to existing diseases, natural disasters and exotic diseases without "thorough, deliberate and evidence-based preparation."

Apart from these, the document also gives recommendations for mosquito control in areas with limited resources or decreased response capacity.

The CDC however, doesn’t claim that these recommendations are all-encompassing, nor do they apply to all stakeholders involved combating mosquito-borne diseases.

This document’s analysis and recommendations are created to help "policymakers make more informed decisions on how to best prepare their jurisdictions for the threats that mosquitoes pose to human (as well as animal) health, economic prosperity and quality of life."

To access the summary of the recommendations or to read the entire material, visit the CDC west nile virus website.