PMI has supported entomological monitoring in Cameroon since October 2018, conducting vector bionomics data collections either monthly or every other month in five sites: Gounougou (located in the North region in Lagdo district), Simatou (in the Far North in Maga district), Bonabéri (located in the Littoral region in Bonassama district), Mangoum (in the West region in Foumbot district), and Nyabessang (South region, Ambam district). Insecticide resistance monitoring was conducted in four sentinel sites (Gounougou, Simatou, Nyabessang, and Mangoum) in late 2018 and in all five sites in 2019 and 2020.
In 2020, vector surveillance data collected using three collection methods—human landing catches (HLCs), U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) light traps (LTs), and pyrethrum spray catches (PSCs)—showed a diversity of Anopheles species across sites. Anopheles gambiae s.l., An. pharoensis, and An. funestus s.l. were the most abundant and were found in all sites and through all collection methods, except Bonabéri where only An. gambiae s.l. was collected using HLCs. An. moucheti and An. nili were collected only at Nyabessang through HLCs and CDC LTs.
In year three, VectorLink Cameroon also trained a total of 51 health personnel from five regions (Far North, North, Littoral, East, and West) on basic entomology, including collection and identification of larvae and mosquitoes. In addition, the project supported the NMCP in the revision and validation of the Insecticide Resistance Management (IRM) plan. Guidelines for ITN continuous distribution were also drafted and validated by the NMCP. VectorLink also supported the training of a total of 758 health facility personnel (314 from the North and 444 from the Far North) on the updated guidelines.
In year four (May 2021 – April 2022), the PMI VectorLink Cameroon project worked with the NMCP and local research institutes [Biotechnology Center (BTC), Center for Research in Infectious Diseases (CRID), and the Central African Organization for Endemic Diseases Control (OCEAC)] to conduct entomological monitoring and insecticide susceptibility testing. The project subcontracted with CRID to conduct laboratory analyses of entomological samples collected during the work plan period. The project’s primary objective was to collect field and laboratory entomological data to support NMCP with data for vector control decision making for implementing life-saving malaria vector control interventions with the overall goal of reducing the burden of malaria. In 2019, three million cases and 4,500 deaths were recorded in health facilities, with 60% of malaria cases among children under five. In addition, morbidity among pregnant women increased from 12.7% in 2013 to 19.6% in 2019.
Specific objectives achieved were as follows:
- Continued to monitor the species composition, density, behavior, and Plasmodium sporozoite infection rates of malaria vectors in five longitudinal vector surveillance sites selected by the NMCP and located in various ecological zones.
- Determined the susceptibility of the primary malaria vector An. gambiae s.l. to insecticides used for impregnation of ITNs and IRS, including chlorfenapyr, in 10 sentinel sites.
- Measured the intensity of insecticide resistance, determine the resistance mechanism, and assess the synergist effect of piperonyl butoxide (PBO) on the susceptibility of An. gambiae s.l. in the 10 sites.
Entomological Scale Up of Capacity
- Organized two sessions (one in the Adamawa region and one in the East region) to train health personnel on basic entomology.
- Supported the NMCP to organize quarterly national Vector Control Working Group Committee meetings and enhance NMCP capacity to use entomological data for decision making.