Background: Dengue is considered one of the most important vector-borne diseases in Thailand. Its incidence is increasing despite routine implementation of national dengue control programmes. This study, conducted during 2010, aimed to demonstrate an application of integrated, community-based, eco-bio-social strategies in combination with locally-produced eco-friendly vector control tools in the dengue control programme, emphasizing urban and peri-urban settings in eastern Thailand.
Methodology: Three different community settings were selected and were randomly assigned to intervention and control clusters. Key community leaders and relevant governmental authorities were approached to participate in this intervention programme. Ecohealth volunteers were identified and trained in each study community. They were selected among active community health volunteers and were trained by public health experts to conduct vector control activities in their own communities using environmental management in combination with eco-friendly vector control tools. These trained ecohealth volunteers carried out outreach health education and vector control during household visits. Management of public spaces and public properties, especially solid waste management, was efficiently carried out by local municipalities. Significant reduction in the pupae per person index in the intervention clusters when compared to the control ones was used as a proxy to determine the impact of this programme.
Results: Our community-based dengue vector control programme demonstrated a significant reduction in the pupae per person index during entomological surveys which were conducted at two-month intervals from May 2010 for the total of six months in the intervention and control clusters. The programme also raised awareness in applying eco-friendly vector control approaches and increased intersectoral and household participation in dengue control activities.
Conclusion: An eco-friendly dengue vector control programme was successfully implemented in urban and peri-urban settings in Thailand, through intersectoral collaboration and practical action at household level, with a significant reduction in vector densities.