USAID’s Fight to Tackle the Zika Mosquito is Proving Effective in El Salvador
In September 2016, the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) introduced the Zika AIRS Project (ZAP), implemented by Abt Associates, as a vector control response to the emerging infectious disease. ZAP targets the areas with the highest incidence of Zika to protect the most vulnerable, using vector control. In June 2017, ZAP began door-to-door community awareness campaigns in El Salvador, hiring community health workers to encourage households to eliminate breeding sites in and around their homes. Many households in El Salvador, and other Latin American countries, have large storage containers to store water for domestic use, which can become ideal breeding sites for the Aedes aegypti. In cooperation with El Salvador’s Ministry of Health (MOH), ZAP applies larvicide to such water containers to reduce mosquito population density and disease transmission rates. Overall, ZAP is building capacity of country governments to implement effective vector control strategies and improving quality of life. This report discusses their success story.