IVM in Action: The guppy fish project

Even when resources are stretched to the limit, one shouldn’t lose hope. Integrated vector management (IVM) is one of the measures that can be put in place to help outsmart dengue. Together, its five elements will help us in our fight against the deadly disease:
IVM in actionIVM makes a difference

IVM can and does make a significant difference, especially if coupled with other approaches (like surveillance or effective diagnosis). Check out the graphic below to see IVM in action in Cambodia and Lao PDR. Learn how these communities brought the five elements of IVM together and see how each element contributes to the three vital components of their more efficient, more cost effective, and more sustainable vector control:

  1. A mobilized community that has accepted the intervention and participates in the project: maintaining guppies in targeted water containers.
  2. Organized guppy fish breeding that provides a continuous supply to the community.
  3. A reliable guppy distribution system that includes restocking at the household level and regular project monitoring by community volunteers.
The project was financed by ADB, and was developed and implemented collaboratively by the Ministries of Health, the WHO WPRO, the WHO country offices in Cambodia and the Lao PDR, ADB, and HLSP.

Break Dengue Guppies IVM project infographic

How the 5 elements of IVM bring about long-term change

Imagine a world where malaria, dengue, and other vector-borne diseases are eliminated. How do we make that dream a reality? Studies (Bugoro et al 2011; Whittaker & Chang, 2012) have shown that larval control and environmental management might provide part of the answer. They allow us to build excellent complementary solutions based around the five elements of Integrated Vector Management (IVM):


Check out the graphic below to see IVM in action in the Solomon Islands. A river mouth blocked by a sandbar was creating stagnant water pools – an ideal environment for mosquitoes to breed. Under the stewardship of the Ministry of Health and with technical support of the World Health Organization, the local communities brought the five elements of IVM together when they constructed a novel vector control solution: an 82 m pipeline that took advantage of local seawater currents to naturally flush dammed rivers and streams and stop mosquitoes from breeding.

In the Solomon Islands, this environmental intervention controlled the primary malaria vector – the Anopheles farauti mosquito – at different stages of its life cycle. Just think about how similar systems might help communities in similar environments flush out Aedes aegypti mosquito breeding sites.