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Revista Costarricense de Salud Pública

Print version ISSN 1409-1429


AZOH BARRY, José. Dengue threat: adaptation needs in a disadvantaged neighborhood in Medellín-Colombia. Rev. costarric. salud pública [online]. 2011, vol.20, n.1, pp.16-24. ISSN 1409-1429.

Background/Objective: Dengue fever is mosquito-borne viral disease with severe forms that are fatal. It is a complex and multi-factorial disease whose control is challenging. This growing public health problem is part of climate-sensitive diseases (seasonality) which call for adaptation strategies, especially among the most disadvantaged and vulnerable populations. The objective of this article is to address the use of insecticide-treated materials as a technological response needed for a human adaptive strategy to dengue risk transmission. Methods: First-hand data were collected throughout field work performed following a multidisciplinary methodology. A climatic characterization of the study site - Vallejuelos Medellín--was performed in order to observe the behavior of two variables: temperature and precipitation. In addition, a socio-entomological survey was carried out in a random sample of 401 households. Based on their socioeconomic characteristics, households were classified into poor and very poor strata. Results: Storing water is a widespread practice among community residents. Indices of infestation by Aedes aegypti mosquitoes recorded at the household level were high in both climatic seasons, but higher during the wet one. All houses surveyed did not have barriers such as window and door screens likely to promote vector control in the indoor environment. Conclusions: There is a high epidemiological risk all year long, along with an exposure to vector-human contact at the household level. The need for resorting to improved insecticide-treated materials is real. Such an appropriate technological response to a challenging health threat appears to be a valuable adaptation option among the socially disadvantaged

Keywords : Dengue; Epidemiology; Vulnerability; Adaptation; Environment; Medellín-Colombia; Vulnerabilidad; Adaptación; Medio Ambiente; Medellin-Colombia.

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