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What Are Vector-borne Diseases? – INFOGRAPHIC

Janet Cornett July 27, 2018 0

Human illnesses caused by bacteria, parasites, and viruses. Vector-borne diseases cause more than 700,000 deaths each year. They represent 17% of all infectious diseases around the world.


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Types of vector-borne diseases

  • Chagas disease
  • Dengue fever
  • Human African Trypanosomiasis
  • Japanese encephalitis
  • Leishmaniasis
  • Lyme disease
  • Malaria
  • Onchocerciasis
  • Schistosomiasis
  • West Nile virus
  • Yellow fever

Vectors which transmit these diseases

A vector is a living organism which transmits an infectious disease between humans, or from animals to humans. Such vectors include:

  • Mosquitoes
  • Aquatic snails
  • Black flies
  • Fleas
  • Lice
  • Sandflies
  • Ticks
  • Triatomine bugs
  • Tsetse flies

Preventing vector-borne diseases

  • There are an estimated 96 million cases of dengue fever annually, with 3.9 billion people across 128 countries at risk.
  • More than 400,000 deaths are caused each year around the world by malaria. A majority of these are among children under five [5] years of age.

However, many vector-borne diseases can be prevented through informed protective measures.

The World Health Organization [WHO] offers strategic guidance to its development partners and to countries, under the Global vector control response [GVCR] 2017-2030 in an attempt to prevent diseases and properly respond to outbreaks.

Simple measures can be taken to avoid most vector-borne diseases in areas where they are prevalent. These include:

  • Receiving relevant vaccinations, and ensuring they are up to date.
  • Wearing light-colored clothes – long-sleeved shirts, and long trousers tucked into shoes or socks.
  • Using insect repellents on clothing and exposed skin.
  • Installing window screens at home and the workplace.
  • Sleeping under insecticide-treated bed nets.
  • Checking the body regularly for ticks.
  • Maintaining strict personal and food hygiene.
  • Avoiding contact with blood, bodily fluids, organs, and/or secretions of infected animals and people.


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