EDP has announced a new partnership with the Fijian, Vanuatu and Kiribati health authorities to pilot an innovative approach to protecting people from mosquito-borne diseases.

Eliminate Dengue Program: Pacific Islands

There is a long history of mosquito-borne diseases such as dengue in the Pacific. In the past few years alone, there has been 30,000 suspected cases of dengue in Fiji, Vanuatu and Kiribati.

In August 2017, the Eliminate Dengue Program (EDP) announced a new partnership with the Fijian, Vanuatu and Kiribati health authorities to pilot an innovative approach to protecting people from mosquito-borne diseases.  The partnership is funded and supported by the Australian Government’s innovationXchange. The Eliminate Dengue Program uses a safe and natural bacteria called Wolbachia to reduce the ability of Aedes aegypti mosquitoes to pass diseases between people. Wolbachia is found in up to 60% of all insect species, which means that it is already present in Kiribati, Fiji and Vanuatu.

EDP’s approach works by releasing Wolbachia carrying mosquitoes into a community. The Wolbachia carrying mosquitoes then breed with local mosquitoes and pass the bacteria to their offspring. Over time, these Wolbachia carrying mosquitoes help to block the transmission of mosquito-borne diseases.

The cornerstone of our approach is community support and participation. Over the coming months, EDP will work together with local communities to improve the lives of those at risk of mosquito-borne diseases in the Pacific.

The Eliminate Dengue Program is currently operating in 10 countries around the world. The method has been deployed in Australia, Indonesia, Vietnam, Colombia and Brazil with no locally acquired dengue cases in areas where Wolbachia has been established.

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