Malaria is the leading cause of morbidity and mortality in Uganda. Accounting for 30 – 50 percent of outpatient visits and 15 – 20 percent of hospital admissions, malaria places a huge burden on the Ugandan health system. Recent PMI-supported activities include IRS in high burden eastern and east-central districts with persistently high malaria prevalence rates; ITN distribution via ANC/EPI clinics and school outlets as well as social marketing of nets at a subsidized price; training and supervision of health workers in integrated management of malaria including malaria in pregnancy; a collection of surveillance data; management and monitoring of insecticide resistance; and behavior change communication activities that reach millions of Ugandans with key malaria messages.
In 2019, the PMI VectorLink Uganda project, conducted IRS in 15 districts, targeting 1,369,305 structures using Actellic® 300CS in 13 districts and SumiShield® 50WG in two districts from March 18-June 26, 2019. A total of 1,291,569 structures were sprayed out of 1,393,562 structures found by spray operators in the targeted districts, resulting in a spray coverage rate of 92.7 percent.
In 2020, VectorLink Uganda conducted IRS in 16 districts, targeting 1,393,562 structures, starting with the remaining balance of 2019 Actellic 300CS in seven Phase I districts and SumiShield 50WG in eight Phase II districts, followed by Fludora Fusion in all the 16 Phase I and II districts from March 2 through June 23, 2020. The project sprayed a total of 1,395,569 structures out of 1,475,422 structures found by spray operators in the targeted districts during the 2020 IRS campaign, resulting in a 94.6% spray coverage rate.
In 2021 VectorLink Uganda will work with the Ministry of Health’s (MOH) National Malaria Control Division (NMCD) and district and sub-county stakeholders to target 1,321,459 eligible structures in 14 districts (10 PMI districts and 4 Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office) using Fludora Fusion.
The project’s primary objective is to reach a minimum coverage of 85% of the structures found in each district by implementing high-quality IRS operations.
In addition to spraying, in Year 4 (2021), the project will carry out the following activities:
- Scale up capacity at the national, regional, district, and local levels to manage IRS operations, including planning, spraying, resource allocation, and monitoring and evaluation (M&E).
- Collaborate with districts and other stakeholders on prioritizing implementation of activities in their IRS exit/sustanability plans, with a focus on the Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office-supported districts (Amolatar, Dokolo, Kaberamaido and Kalaki) to be exited after the 2021 spray campaign.
- Conduct training with a focus on IRS supervision and spray techniques to improve the overall quality of spraying.
- Conduct regular M&E of project activities to ensure alignment with set targets and objectives. Mobile data collection will be piloted in Bugiri district covering 5 (29.4%) operation sites. 95 spray operators will use mobile phones to capture household and spray data.
- Mainstream gender equality and female empowerment by ensuring women’s participation in all project activities.
- Involve youth in spray activities in the target districts by engaging youth as parish mobilizers, and also sensitize youth groups in churches and encourage them to sensitize the community in turn about IRS. The project will also recruit youth over 18 years of age as spray team members, and encourage them to sensitize the community in their villages in partnership with the Local Council Is (LCIs (village leaders)) during spraying.
- Carry out a logistics assessment in all districts, and arrange all procurement, shipping, delivery, and storage of IRS commodities.
- Field-test digital scanning devices and open source software to track movement of serialized insecticide throughout the project’s insecticide supply chain.
- Coordinate community mobilization activities in collaboration with stakeholders to raise awareness of IRS and encourage beneficiary and stakeholder ownership.
- Conduct insecticide resistance, wall bioassay, and vector density monitoring; vector behavioral studies; and ITN durability monitoring.
- Ensure safe and correct insecticide application, thus minimizing human and environmental exposure to IRS insecticides, in compliance with the Pesticide Evaluation Report and Safer Use Action Plan and Supplemental Environmental Assessment (SEA).
Success stories from PMI VectorLink Uganda: