School and community driven dengue vector control and monitoring in Myanmar: Study protocol for a cluster randomized controlled trial
Overgaard HJ., Linn NYY., Kyaw AMM., Braack L., Win Tin M., Bastien S., Vande Velde F., Echaubard P., Zaw W., Mukaka M., Maude R.
Background. Dengue is the most common and widespread mosquito-borne arboviral disease globally estimated to cause >390 million infections and >20,000 deaths annually. There are no effective vaccines or preventive drugs. Control of dengue transmission relies primarily on mosquito vector control. Although most vector control methods currently used by national dengue control programs may temporarily reduce mosquito populations, there is little evidence that they affect transmission. There is an urgent need for innovative, participatory, effective, and locally adapted approaches for sustainable vector control and monitoring in which students can be particularly relevant contributors and to demonstrate a clear link between vector reduction and dengue transmission reduction, using tools that are inexpensive and easy to use by local communities in a sustainable manner. Methods. Here we describe a cluster randomized controlled trial to be conducted in 46 school catchment areas in two townships in Yangon, Myanmar. The outcome measures are dengue cases confirmed by rapid diagnostic test in the townships, dengue incidence in schools, entomological indices, knowledge, attitudes and practice, behavior, and engagement. Conclusions. The trial involves middle school students that positions them to become actors in dengue knowledge transfer to their communities and take a leadership role in the delivery of vector control interventions and monitoring methods. Following this rationale, we believe that students can become change agents of decentralized vector surveillance and sustainable disease control in line with recent new paradigms in integrated and participatory vector surveillance and control. This provides an opportunity to operationalize transdisciplinary research towards sustainable health development. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic and political instability in Myanmar the project has been terminated by the donor, but the protocol will be helpful for potential future implementation of the project in Myanmar and/or elsewhere. Registration: This trial was registered in the ISRCTN Registry on 31 May 2022 (https://doi.org/10.1186/ISRCTN78254298).