Under the guidance of Zhejiang CDC and other professional departments, experts assess target villages on MFV construction suitability based on the village environment, type and quantity of mosquito breeding sites, density of mosquitoes, village committee and constituents’ willingness for and knowledge-level of mosquito control, and the village committee’s coordinating capabilities. Suitable villages for MFV construction are selected based on comprehensive assessments.
Villages suitable for MFV construction will establish a mosquito control management organization under the leadership of their village committee to coordinate the whole village and make plans based on the results of the assessment. The MFV construction process is subject to guidance and participation from professional technicians of CDCs in Zhejiang Province. Organization members are responsible for mobilization of villagers and daily management tasks, which include objectives to improve village residents’ mosquito-control-related scientific knowledge and habits.
MFV system construction incorporates scientific mosquito control measures into village regulations, which will influence culture changes, guide and restrict behavior of villagers, and have an important role in village social governance.
Because mosquitoes can breed in containers and in places with standing water such as ditches, ponds, paddy fields, sewage pits, waste tires, bamboo piles, and tree holes, etc., MFV construction advocates for comprehensive control measures guided by environmental governance that is supplemented by physical, biological, and chemical methods with equal emphasis on mosquito control and prevention (7). For breeding sites with a high degree of difficulty, work should be carried out in stages based on local conditions. Active control of overwintering mosquitoes and those emerging in the early spring are key to year-round mosquito control. Solar mosquito traps and local fish such as Oryzias latipes, Hemiculter leucisculus, and Cyprinus carpio haematopterus can be used as supplementary means of mosquito control. For example, 10 O. latipes fish per square meter of a river or pond can effectively eliminate mosquito larvae.
Sustainable vector management emphasizes the continuous implementation of vector control and management under the guidance of surveillance and assessments (8-9). For the MFV, regular mosquito vector surveillance should be carried out at least once a month from April to November to appropriately evaluate the effectiveness of control measures and levels of improvement. After MFV establishment and implementation, surveillance will continue to play a crucial role in guiding mosquito control, but the frequency of checks can be reduced. The evaluation criteria of MFV are composed primarily of four aspects: mosquito density, village management, the effects of health education, and the attitudes of villagers (10).
Village committees can regularly promote health education for villagers through lectures, posters, publicity materials, the WeChat Official Account, and village rules to help villagers gain a more comprehensive scientific understanding, master mosquito control basics, and develop a more hygienic and healthier lifestyle. The long-term success of MFVs depends on promoting health education, better maintenance habits, and villager health literacy.
Furthermore, MFV construction aims to form an initiative based on voluntary participation to maintain mosquito control standards by consistently removing mosquito breeding sites and keeping the environment clean. After experiencing the benefits of science-based mosquito control, residents of MFV have adopted a self-reinforcing atmosphere of “everyone is responsible, everyone is involved”.
MFV construction is funded by government-encouraged investment or by funds raised by the selected villages. These funds may be used for the modification and maintenance of public environments and facilities, health education, publicity, and surveillance and assessment of the mosquito-control methods. For example, 118,000 RMB was invested in the MFV construction in Xuexiazhuang Village from 2016 to 2017, of which 86,000 RMB was spent on the renovation of basic infrastructure such as toilets, 5,000 RMB was spent on health education, and 27,000 RMB was used to pay for labor costs. Follow-up maintenance costs are funded by independently by the village. The collective Xuexiazhuang village economy pays 15,000 RMB per year, which is equivalent to an annual investment of about 87 RMB to each of the households in the whole village. Therefore, following MFV establishment, villages will have low long-term mosquito density and low sustainable maintenance costs.