Mosquito borne-diseases are a health concern for people living in Fiji. In 2017, approximately 2,200 dengue cases were reported in Fiji.
The World Mosquito Program was pleased to announce a new partnership with the Fijian health authorities in August 2017. The WMP and the Ministry of Health and Medical Services in Fiji have made a commitment to work together to pilot an innovative approach to protect people from mosquito-borne diseases such as dengue, Zika and chikungunya.
Supported and funded by the Australian Government’s innovationXchange, the initiative will begin by rolling out the WMP’s Wolbachia method across the Suva-Nausori Corridor in 2018 in collaboration with government and local communities.
In June 2018, the WMP received funding from the New Zealand Government to help reduce the dengue burden in Fiji. The funding will enable the WMP to expand its self-sustaining method in Fiji to the Western division to include more than 120,000 people in areas around Nadi and Lautoka.
The World Mosquito Program's approach involves releasing mosquitoes that carry Wolbachia. Wolbachia are natural and safe bacteria that reduce the ability of Aedes aegypti mosquitoes to transmit viruses between people. The mosquitoes we release breed with the wild Aedes aegypti mosquitoes in the area, passing Wolbachia to their offspring.
It is not an emergency measure but is a long term, self-sustaining solution to significantly reduce the risk of future outbreaks in high-risk areas. The WMP's Wolbachia method is also compatible with other methods such as insecticides and vaccines.
The WMP is looking forward to working with the community to find ways to reduce the risk of Zika, dengue and chikungunya in Suva and is interested in hearing from the community. If you have questions or comments, please contact us.
Find out more about the World Mosquito Program's self-sustaining Wolbachia method.