Bringing our self-sustaining solution to Mexico

The World Mosquito Program (WMP), in partnership with Baja California Sur Health authorities, were pleased to officially announce today that La Paz is the first city in Mexico to implement its self-sustaining Wolbachia method. The WMP’s innovative solution provides communities with long-lasting protection from Zika, dengue and chikungunya viruses.

La Paz is an urban area in the state of Baja California Sur, with a climate that encourages the prevalence of mosquito-borne diseases. In particular, dengue poses a significant health burden. Baja California Sur experienced a dengue epidemic in 2013 and 2014, with 4,472 confirmed cases. For that period, La Paz recorded the highest numbers of confirmed cases in Mexico.

Mosquito-borne diseases are placing significant financial pressure on families in La Paz, as people who fall ill are unable to work or attend school, and relatives often need to take time off to care for their family members. With governments around the world spending an estimated US $8.9 billion annually to treat these diseases, public health officials and policymakers are increasingly seeking innovative solutions – such as the WMP’s Wolbachia method.

The WMP’s research has shown that Wolbachia, which reduces the ability of mosquitoes to transmit viruses between people, can sustain itself in mosquito populations without continual reapplication. This unique feature makes the WMP’s method a long-term, cost-effective and self-sustaining approach.

Following today’s announcement in La Paz, the WMP is now working in 12 countries across Asia, Latin America, the Pacific and our pilot program in Australia.

“It builds on our success in Medellin, Colombia, and Brazil’s Rio de Janeiro in helping to reduce the threat and impact of mosquito-borne virus outbreaks in Latin America,” WMP’s Director of Government Relations (Americas) Dr Jorge Osorio said at the launch today.

“Our approach strengthens the resilience of communities like La Paz against emerging regional and global health security threats such as the Zika virus.”

Learn more about our project in Mexico.