Mosquito-borne illnesses like West Nile virus (WNV) and dengue are growing threats to the United States. Proactive mosquito control is one strategy to reduce the risk of disease transmission. In 2012, we measured the public's willingness to pay (WTP) for increased mosquito control in two cities: Key West, FL, where there have been recent dengue outbreaks, and Tucson, AZ, where dengue vectors are established and WNV has been circulating for over a decade. Nearly three quarters of respondents in both cities (74% in Tucson and 73% in Key West) would be willing to pay $25 or more annually toward an increase in publicly funded mosquito control efforts. WTP was positively associated with income (both cities), education (Key West), and perceived mosquito abundance (Tucson). Concerns about environmental impacts of mosquito control were associated with lower WTP in Key West. Expanded mosquito control efforts should incorporate public opinion as they respond to evolving disease risks.
© The American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene.