Institute Altos Estudios Dr Arnoldo Gabaldon Iae

Maracay, Venezuela

Institute Altos Estudios Dr Arnoldo Gabaldon Iae

Maracay, Venezuela
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The Leishmaniasis Control Program in Venezuela, directed by the Institute of Biomedicine (IB) of the Ministry of Popular Power for Health (MPPH) has been strengthened in recent years by the improvement of health care, especially with regard to the establishment of diagnostic procedures and for Visceral Leishmaniasis (VL), tighter relations with the Zoonosis Department of the MPPH. However, entomological and epidemiological indicators of the dispersion, and in some cases urbanization, of cutaneous and visceral leishmaniasis (CL and VL, respectively) have highlighted the need for vector control in order to approach this health problem from a transdisciplinary systemic perspective in the context of environmental protection. We present a review of epidemiological data, our knowledge about the species of phlebotomine sand flies incriminated in transmission, and their response to insecticides and control assays undertaken in Venezuela. A multisectorial program managed between the Institute of Biomedicine (MPPH), the General Directorate of Environmental Health (GDEH) (MPPH) and the Education Sector (MPPE) for the control of leishmaniasis-Chagas disease and leishmaniasis-malaria in co-endemic areas, has been proposed as a feasible short term strategy. The need for high quality health education programs implemented according to the epidemiological and socio-cultural features of the regions, before control measures are selected, is also emphasized. It is important to take into account the knowledge, attitudes and practices (KAP) of the population at risk in order to a) ensure acceptance of the program and b) promote community participation, through environmental management and personal protection, for the prevention of these "neglected diseases". Based on this approach, these integrated control actions within a multi-sectorial program would lead towards the optimization of resources and the sustainability of the program itself.

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