Architecture

Working Groups

Vector Control Working Group (VCWG)

Co-Chairs :
Dr Gerhard Hesse Bayer, Germany
 
Working Group Secretariat :
Dr Konstantina Boutsika Swiss TPH, Switzerland
 
Next meeting :
TBA
 
Purpose

The purpose of the RBM Vector Control Working Group (VCWG) is to align RBM partners on best practices to reach and maintain universal coverage with effective vector control interventions. The VCWG disseminates the normative and policy-setting guidelines of the World Health Organization (WHO) by helping to translate these norms and standards to international and country-level partners. It also supports the generation of evidence to inform global policy and guidelines, to protect the efficacy of existing tools and simulate the development of new tools. Aiming at coordinating the support to malaria endemic countries with regard to implementing WHO guidelines, the VCWG provides an essential forum where diverse partners of the vector control community from the public sector, the private sector, research and academia, and civil society, can come together, to reach a common understanding of the threats and opportunities, to learn from each other and to develop the necessary networks and activities to overcome these challenges.

Rationale

Malaria control efforts over the past decade have shown remarkable success. According to the 2015 World Malaria Report, between 2000 and 2013, malaria mortality reduced by 47% globally and by 54% in the WHO African region. 55 countries are on track to reduce malaria burden by 75%, in line with World Health Assembly target for 2015. These achievements have been in large part due to the scale up of vector control, especially the deployment of insecticide treated mosquito nets (ITNs) and indoor residual spraying (IRS). These fragile gains are now seriously threatened by insecticide resistance in the mosquito vector, by diminishing financial support, by our inability to prevent transmission beyond the reach of our traditional treated mosquito nets and indoor spraying, and by the capacity needs of national programs to implement entomological monitoring and optimize their scant resources for vector control. This is a critical time for global malaria control efforts and for communities that are now at greater risk for a resurgence of malaria illness and death.

In meeting these challenges, the VCWG also sees opportunities. The year 2015 is the final year for the Millennium Development Goals, to be followed by the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). For post 2015, the malaria control community has defined new goals which are covering the period 2016-2030, laid down in the two essential reads, the RBMs guide for collective Action and Investment to defeat malaria 2016-2030 (AIM) – for a malaria free world, complementing WHO’s Global Technical Strategy for Malaria 2016-2030 (GTS).

Vector control has been shown to achieve quick and significant reductions in malaria transmission in many eco-epidemiological settings. It remains the primary arsenal in the path to malaria elimination. As coverage levels and protection improve, there is a need to ensure that potential loss of immunity among the protected populations, do not lead to flare ups of incidence. The challenge and goal will be to maintain ongoing protection of these populations. Rising insecticide resistance and current difficulties in addressing residual transmission, for example, denote an urgent need for innovation and new tools that expand the paradigms of effective intervention and increase opportunities for more cost-effective and sustainable vector control. The VCWG therefore promotes basic research and development into new tools, and the translation of vector control priorities into operational research, combining the input of its constituent national and international academia/research and private sector development partners. Through increased collaboration with regional networks like Asia Pacific Malaria Elimination Network (APMEN), Pan African Mosquito Control Association (PAMCA) and Pakistan–Islamic Republic of Iran–Afghanistan Malaria Network (PIAM-Net), the VCWG ensures that the specific needs of regional networks are fully considered in its deliberations on global malaria strategies.

The diversity of the VCWG is its strength. Whether it is long-lasting insecticidal nets (LLINs) distribution or durability monitoring, IRS capacity building, larval source management (LSM), the global plan for insecticide resistance management (GPIRM) implementation, or addressing evolving challenges and new tools to meet these challenges and also expand the paradigms of intervention, the diversity of VCWG members allows for a rich dialogue and mutual learning, and for developing more robust and adaptive responses.

There are two opportunities in this diverse partnership especially important to the VCWG. First is the place of the commercial sector. Through individual company membership, through participation of consortia such as GBCHealth and CropLife, and through product development partnerships, such as the Innovative Vector Control Consortium (IVCC), the VCWG provides a forum where all the constituencies, including the commercial sector, can come together to build consensus on the challenges and opportunities in vector control. The second, emerging opportunity of particular importance to the VCWG, is through the recently launched United Nations Development Programme (UNDP)-RBM Multisectoral Action Framework for Malaria Control, providing a roadmap for engaging an even broader range of partners from the agriculture sector, infrastructure, education, housing and urban development, etc. on mosquito and vector control.

Functions of the Working Group

There is no single recommendation on how malaria interventions like LLINs, IRS, LSM, resistance management schemes etc., should be brought effectively to scale and be sustained and how these intervention can evolve to meet emerging biological, programmatic and financial threats. It is a basic function of the VCWG to translate the heterogeneity of malaria transmission and ecology, and need for adequate consideration of local priorities in its support of individual national health systems.

Convene: Organize and convene meetings, workshops and electronic fora to debate and develop consensus among stakeholders through adaptation and implementation of WHO norms and standards on one side, but also to share innovations and experiences on how collectively we can overcome challenges and take advantage of emerging opportunities for vector control.

Co-ordinate: Manage fora for building consensus on how to effectively implement, run and sustain vector control programs. This includes building the understanding between the needs of the national programs, the needs of the product manufacturers, academia and implementers to understand each other and to work together to find innovative solutions and stimulate appropriate research and development.

Facilitate Communication: Assemble evidence on best practices and ensure flow of information from the field to the working group and vice versa including communication between VC related networks. Work through the Sub-Regional Networks (SRNs) and in collaboration with other RBM mechanisms to coordinate with partners in mobilizing technical and financial resources and providing support to national control efforts.

For further information, please refer to the VCWG Revised Terms of Reference adopted in January 2014 following the 25th RBM Partnership Board meeting.

Date Meeting outputs
3-5.02.2016

Eleventh annual meeting of the Vector Control Working Group

Participants in the 11th annual Vector Control Working Group meeting on 3-5 February exceeded 230 and engaged in robust discussion on emerging technical and political issues.

The restructuring of the work streams was the highlight of this year's meeting. The new work streams had their kick-off meetings and discussed their work plans for 2016-2017. For more information, take a look at the presentations given during the work stream meetings.

Presentations:

Summaries

Date Meeting outputs
28-30.01.2015

Tenth annual meeting of the Vector Control Working Group

Participants in the 10th annual Vector Control Working Group meeting on 28-30 January exceeded 200 and engaged in robust discussion on emerging technical and political issues, the 2015 work plan, and the future structure of the RBM Partnership.

Insecticide resistance was a core concern and Dr Pedro Alonso, Director of the WHO Global Malaria Programme in his introduction, stated, “This is the greatest current threat to the future of malaria control and to the sustainability of the achievements of recent years.” More than 50 percent of international funding for malaria control is spent on vector control commodities and prevention activities which accounts for the majority of 4.3 million deaths prevented since 2000.

Another major talking point of the meeting was the future shape of the RBM Partnership. The Task Force on Architecture and Governance, currently reviewing the structure and function of the Partnership, includes members of the VCWG and other working groups. Playing an essential role for malaria control in fostering a common vision, the VCWG has been invited to give inputs into this process.

This was the first annual meeting of the VCWG funded entirely by participants.

Presentations:

Posters:

Summaries

Date Meeting outputs
19-21.02.2014

Ninth annual meeting of the Vector Control Working Group

The 9th Annual Meeting of the Roll Back Malaria Vector Control Working Group convened 19 to 21 February in Geneva, with 192 participants from 103 institutions and 44 countries, including 19 countries in Africa, 9 in Asia, 11 in Europe and 2 in Oceania. Bringing together partners from diverse skills and backgrounds, from national vector borne disease control programmes, research and academic institutes, foundations, international and bilateral organizations, industry, NGOs, and colleagues from the housing sector, environment, and the corporate business sector, the meeting enabled a common understanding of the current status of policies and strategies and an opportunity to develop new links, partnerships and ideas for collective action.

Dr Fatoumata Nafo-Traoré, RBM Executive Director and Dr John Reeder, Director Special Programme for Research & Training in Tropical Diseases (TDR) and interim Director of the WHO Global Malaria Programme, opened the meeting, laying out the significant, but still fragile gains of the past decade of malaria control and the challenges moving forward. Over the following three days in plenary and smaller group presentations and discussions, the work streams discussed and developed action points to address these challenges, including the threat of insecticide resistance; maintaining universal LLIN coverage, especially in an era of constrained resources; improving the capacity, efficiency and impact of Indoor Residual Spraying; developing new paradigms for vector control and personal protection, including for outdoor transmission, beyond the reach of our traditional IRS and LLINs; bringing scientific rigor to our vector control efforts, including larval control; and building capacity for the next generation of public health entomologists and vector control specialists who can adapt to the evolving threats and opportunities for sustainable integrated vector management.

A new area of discussion was how we can collaborate in the rapidly evolving housing and infrastructure sector to reduce the threat of vectors in the domestic environment. While the challenges are significant, so are the opportunities. The 9th VCWG meeting marked a recognition of how far the vector control community has advanced in recent years, and strengths and opportunities of multisectoral collaboration that will lead us into the future.

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Summaries

Date Meeting outputs
28-30.01.2013

Eighth annual meeting of the Vector Control Working Group

Eighth annual meeting of the Vector Control Working Group

A three-day annual meeting of the Vector Control Working Group at the Roll Back Malaria Partnership (RBM) spotlighted the latest evidence on effective malaria vector control management and provided RBM partners with a platform to develop plans for supporting effectively country efforts in 2013. Topical issues for discussions include capacity building for indoor residual spraying (IRS), insecticide resistance and entomological management.

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Summaries

Date Meeting outputs
6-8.02.2012

Seventh annual meeting of the Vector Control Working Group

Seventh annual meeting of the Vector Control Working Group

Members of the RBM Vector Control Working Group have gathered for their 7th Annual Meeting to discuss urgent and emerging issues and establish a work plan for 2012.

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Summaries

Date Meeting outputs
7-9.02.2011

Sixth annual meeting of the Vector Control Working Group

Sixth annual meeting of the Vector Control Working Group

At its largest meeting to date, 136 members of the Roll Back Malaria Vector Control Working Group (VCWG) gathered to discuss current and emerging issues on global malaria vector control. Representing a range of regions, national programmes and organizations, participants reviewed progress made to date by the working group's eight workstreams. A work plan for 2011 was also established, to be coordinated with WHO's Global Malaria Programme and partners.

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Meeting Summary [PDF 1M]

Date Meeting outputs
8-9.02.2010 5th WIN Meeting

Background documents

Presentations
Session 1:

Session 2:

Session 3:

Session 4:

Session 5:

Session 6:

Session 7:

Date Meeting outputs
24-26.10.2007

Background documents 

Presentations

AGA Malaria and Public-Private Partnerships in Ghana’s Health Sector
2016 African Development Bank

Rethinking Malaria Control
"Wing Beats", Vol.25, No.2 (Summer 2014)

Residual Transmission of Malaria: An Old Issue for New Approaches
"Anopheles mosquitoes - New insights into malaria vectors" ISBN 978-953-51-1188-7

Malaria
EB128.R13

A Research Agenda for Malaria Eradication: Vector Control
PLOS Medicine, January 2011 Issue

A Research Agenda to Underpin Malaria Eradication
PLOS Medicine, January 2011 Issue