A rapid, low-cost methodology for longitudinal evaluation of insecticide treated bednet distributions: a pilot survey coupling bednet usage with malaria prevalence at the household level

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Karen B. Jacobson *
Dennis Danforth
James Lin
Steven Merjavy
Brendan Milliner
Kohtaro Ooka
Nils Hennig
(*) Corresponding Author:
Karen B. Jacobson | karen.jacobson@mssm.edu

Abstract

Tanzania’s National Malaria Control Program distributed 23.3 million insecticidetreated bed nets (ITNs) between 2009 and 2011. Annual randomized household surveys were conducted from 2009 to 2011 to assess the incremental effects of the distribution campaign on malaria prevalence and bednet usage in Kijumbura village in Kagera, Tanzania. Data was collected about household ITN ownership and individual use, and each household member was given a rapid malaria diagnostic test (RDT). In total, 1247 individuals from 285 households participated. From 2009 to 2011, household ITN ownership increased from 50.6 to 95.3% and individual usage increased from 9.7 to 55.3% in 2011. Malaria point prevalence decreased from 15.8% in 2009 to 6.5% in 2010, and increased from 6.5% in 2010 to 10.7% in 2011. The survey cost in 2011 was 23.50 USD per household; major expenses were transportation, personnel payment, and the purchase of the RDTs. Evaluations of bednet distribution programs generally rely on distribution data and selfreported net ownership, but it is important to also assess the goal endpoint of reduction in malaria prevalence. We show that this can be achieved quickly and cost-effectively through randomized surveys measuring bednet usage coupled with malaria prevalence at the household level.

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