Four Local Health Departments from Three States Selected to Share Best Practices for Vector Control and Surveillance Programs
Washington, DC, July 29, 2022 — The National Association of County and City Health Officials (NACCHO), the voice of the nation’s nearly 3,000 local health departments, has announced the newest cohort of its Vector Control Collaborative Program (VCC), which strengthens the ability of local communities to detect and respond to disease threats spread by mosquitoes and ticks. The program is supported by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s National Center for Emerging and Zoonotic Infectious Diseases Division of Vector-Borne Diseases.
Local vector control programs are the front line of defense against vector-borne disease threats such as West Nile virus, Eastern equine encephalitis virus, and Zika virus. These programs fulfill an essential role in preserving the health of their communities; this important work is underscored by the fact that disease cases from mosquito, tick, and flea bites have tripled in the United States from 2004 to 2019. West Nile virus was first detected in the United States in 1999 and is now the most common cause of mosquito-borne disease in the United States in most years. Recent outbreaks further highlight the need for more robust vector surveillance and control programs.
The VCC provides a critical opportunity for local program officials to share best practices in vector control, surveillance and guidance and to contribute tools and recommendations in implementing Integrated Pest Management and Integrated Mosquito Management principles. The program pairs mentee programs with vector control programs with demonstrated expertise (mentors) in the fundamental capabilities of vector control and surveillance.
The following are the mentor and mentee teams for the 2022 Cohort.
MENTEE: CHAUTAUQUA COUNTY (NY)
MENTOR: TULSA HEALTH DEPARTMENT (OK)
- Chautauqua County will focus on three capabilities during its mentorship: Routine mosquito surveillance through standardized trapping and species identification, treatment decisions using surveillance data, and routine vector control activities. Chautauqua County staff will work with officials from their mentor, Tulsa Health Department, to implement best practices surrounding their identified capabilities and to assist them in working through any barriers during the process
MENTEE: MCINTOSH COUNTY (GA)
MENTOR: CHATHAM COUNTY (GA)
- McIntosh County will focus on three capabilities during its mentorship: Routine mosquito surveillance through standardized trapping and species identification, treatment decisions using surveillance data, and larviciding/adulticiding practices. The County plans to use grant funds to purchase mosquito traps, and it will train on these with their mentor, Chatham County. Chatham will also assist McIntosh in selecting surveillance sites using mapping software.
To date, NACCHO has awarded 37 Vector Control Collaborative grants across 11 states to train program staff in key functions in mosquito and tick management, build jurisdictional partnerships, and expand program operations. Vector control programs that have completed the VCC have also reported the following benefits of the program:
- Adopting best practices and building practical knowledge that increase operational efficiency.
- Attending vector control and surveillance trainings and conferences.
- Establishing physical upgrades to program space and equipment to support resistance testing, education, and control efforts.
- Expanding partnerships with mentorship partner, academia, and other jurisdictional organizations.
- Gaining opportunities to shadow and learn from more advanced programs.
The latest cohort began the VCC in March 2022 and will complete the mentorship program at the end of July 2022. NACCHO will work with participants to collate and promote the lessons learned throughout the program to other vector control programs across the country.
For more information on the NACCHO Vector Control Program and the Vector Control Capabilities, visit these websites:
- NACCHO Vector Control Program Site
- A Capabilities-Based Framework for Mosquito Control Programs in the United States
- 2020 National Vector Control Assessment
The National Association of County and City Health Officials (NACCHO) represents the nation’s nearly 3,000 local governmental health departments. These city, county, metropolitan, district, and tribal departments work every day to protect and promote health and well-being for all people in their communities. For more information about NACCHO, please visit www.naccho.org.