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Zika virus: Are bednets an effective measure?

Zika is certainly a major international challenge and the WHO is expected to raise its awareness.

The virus is mainly transmitted by the ubiquitous mosquito Aedes aegypti. This common mosquito bites during the day and therefore the main approach to its control is either removing the breeding sites, 'source reduction', or 'space spraying' by house to house insecticide fogging or truck mounted spraying (ULV, ultra-low volume). Personal protection by the use of insect repellents and screening windows is also a very important approach.

This means the use of bednets is generally of marginal benefit in attacking these day-biting mosquitoes. At AMF, we focus exclusively on the provision of bednets for malaria control. We don’t have experience of controlling day-biting mosquitoes, such as those transmitting dengue, yellow-fever and Zika.