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PMI: Presidents Malaria Initiative - Saving lives in Africa.

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PMI Supports Indoor Residual Spraying (IRS) of Homes to Prevent Malaria in Africa

Malaria is transmitted to humans by the bite of female Anopheles mosquitoes that are infected with malaria parasites. In Africa, these mosquitoes generally feed on people indoors at night and, after feeding, tend to rest on walls. Indoor residual spraying (IRS) consists of spraying the interior walls of homes with insecticides to kill mosquitoes that land on the walls to rest after feeding. These insecticides remain effective three to 10 months, depending on the insecticide used, the type of wall surface, and whether the homeowner washes or replasters the wall after spraying. In order for an IRS program to be fully effective, the World Health Organization (WHO) recommends that at least 80 percent of houses in a targeted area be sprayed, usually once or twice a year, depending on the length of the transmission season and the duration of effectiveness of the insecticide.

PMI has supported IRS activities in 15 focus countries. PMI activities include assessing the environment to ensure safe and effective use of insecticides, educating residents about the benefits of IRS, training local personnel to conduct spray operations, procuring insecticide and equipment, and monitoring and evaluating spray activities.

Across Africa, insecticide resistance is emerging as a major threat to both IRS and insecticide-treated nets. Insecticide resistance is of particular concern in West and East African countries. PMI is working with WHO and other partners to develop robust resistance monitoring and mitigation strategies.

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Photo: IRS involves teams of spray operators equipped with spray pumps and wearing personal protective clothing, as shown here in Uganda.  (click here to see more) Photo: Mr. Aseidi stands in front of a home that has been sprayed in Zanzibar. (click here to see more) Photo: In Rwanda, a young man hands out fliers in his community before an IRS campaign.  (click here to see more) Photo: Before their houses are sprayed, residents in Ghana remove items from their homes to ensure that spray operators have full access to inside walls.  (click here to see more)
Photo: In Uganda, spray operators set off on their bicycles for a day of spraying.  (click here to see more) Photo: A spray operator in Uganda holds a packet of insecticide that he will pour into a spray pump and mix with water.  (click here to see more) Photo: In Ethiopia, a spray operator prepares his pump with insecticide, in preparation for an IRS campaign.  (click here to see more) Photo: In Mozambique, an operator methodically sprays the inside walls of a home with an insecticide that will kill mosquitoes that rest  on them.   (click here to see more)
Photo: Personal protective clothing worn by spray operators is cleaned by teams of washers in designated areas to minimize environmental contamination.   (click here to see more) Photo: Jamila Hassan, who has had malaria 14 times, served as a supervisor and the IRS team leader for Zanzibar Urban District during a PMI-supported IRS campaign.  (click here to see more) Photo: Vector control officials from the Ministry of Health conduct insecticide susceptibility testing in Wakiso, Uganda.  (click here to see more) Photo: Mosquito larvae are collected from pools of water to monitor mosquito populations in the context of an IRS program.  (click here to see more)