Mosquito control is a key function of protecting the public from the transmission of mosquito-borne diseases like West Nile virus, Zika, various forms of encephalitis, and others. Yet, 84% of surveyed local health departments in the United States told NAACHO (the National Association of County and City Health Officials) their vector control programs need improvement.
The reality is, public health officials have a lot to manage, and are tackling issues as varied as nutrition and exercise, to mental health and substance abuse. So to move the needle on mosquito abatement, many public health departments will consider turning to a professional mosquito control service provider to deliver a turnkey program for them.
From our work with health departments across the U.S., we’ve seen a trend of officials asking for guidance on how to determine the best path forward on mosquito control. In that spirit, here are 10 general ways to evaluate professional mosquito control service providers:
- General qualifications: years of experience, organizational size, geographic reach, and staffing levels.
- Inspection and surveillance: mapping systems, trapping methodologies, and virus testing capabilities.
- Larval Control: treatment sites/habitats, species, application methodologies, product selection and availability.
- Adult Control: ground and/or aerial treatments, application equipment, product selection, efficacy and resistance testing.
- Equipment and Personnel Requirements: equipment requirements, staffing levels, hiring processes.
- Operational and Service Quality: training programs, supervisory protocols, and field-based data capture capabilities.
- Contingency Capabilities: virus outbreak experience, and emergency response capabilities.
- Facilities: operational locations, laboratories, insectaries, supply chain requirements.
- Insurance, Regulatory and Stewardship: NPDES and EPA reporting compliance, licensing, and insurance requirements.
- Support Capabilities: account management, community education programs, digital data access and reporting capabilities, public relations support, and resident hotlines.