Italy and France are working together on vector control through the REDLAV project
Tuscany, Liguria, Sardinia (Italy) and Corsica (France) are coordinating their efforts to control the spread of mosquitoes and other potential vectors of disease. By uniting around the REDLAV project, the four regions are able to exchange good practices, share their resources and methods, and promote institutional cohesion on the theme of vector control. These efforts contribute to structuring the management of this issue on a cross-border scale. In previous years, each region has pursued its own control policy. However, they are now benefiting from the use of a common strategic approach.
" The REDLAV project has helped unite Mediterranean partners on vector control by virtue of a cross-border entomological surveillance plan, the harmonisation of protocols, as well as awareness-raising initiatives, with a view to ensuring the health security of affected populations, while respecting the environment. "
The four regions involved in the project have formed a network to help develop a strategy and common practices for mosquito and vector control.
The initiatives have been implemented by the departmental councils of Corse-du-Sud and Haute-Corse, the Province of Oristano, the L2 Health Agency in Lucca and the Experimental Zooprophylactic Institute of Imperia.
In concrete terms, the project has resulted in the implementation of a cross-border entomological monitoring post and has helped develop joint information and awareness-raising actions among the population.
In light of the re-emergence of several vector-transmitted diseases (e.g. the chikungunya virus, dengue fever and the Zika virus via mosquitoes, or Lyme disease via ticks) and their propagation to new areas, REDLAV has both successfully united the local authorities concerned and promoted communication, which is a key part of vector control.
Measures have been taken to teach the population about the ecological conditions specific to the mosquito, as well as simple ways of eliminating mosquito breeding sites. This applies to both adults (TV adverts, information leaflets, smartphone games) and young people (smartphone games, training workshops and theatrical plays in schools). There is also an online website dedicated to the project.
Project REDLAV 2.1 has followed on from this. Funded as part of the call for basic proposals for additional resources and initiated by the 2007-2013 Italy-Maritime France operational programme, the aim of REDLAV 2.1 is to build on the results of the REDLAV project. It aims to do so by acquiring physical and non-physical goods in order to improve the effectiveness of preventative actions and vector control in the cross-border area. The information and awareness-raising component has been further expanded in order to communicate the results and educate the population living in the cross-border area about mosquitoes.
With regard to the direct impact of the project on the economy and employment rate in the affected area, several businesses have been contracted to fulfil various aspects of the project (communication activities, event organisation, providing scientific equipment, etc.). In order to raise awareness in schools, a specific individual has been recruited, as well as five civil service volunteers, for a six-month renewable period.
Total investment and EU funding
A total of EUR 1 352 217 was invested in the REDLAV project. The European Regional Development Fund contributed EUR 1 014 162 million under the Cross-Border Italy-Maritime France Operational Programme for the 2007-2013 programming period.