CDC officials say US needs new mosquito-fighting strategy to combat Zika

CDC health officials are urging U.S. states and cities to re-examine their protocols for handling mosquitoes — an increasingly pressing concern as the Zika virus outbreak continues to creep north and the weather in America continues to warm, according to Reuters.

Traditional methods of exterminating mosquitoes, such as evening insecticide fogging campaigns from truck-mounted sprayers, are not an option for dealing with the Zika-carrying Aedes aegypti mosquito since the bug tends to live in an around people’s homes, health officials have said.

Another reason why conventional mosquito abatement efforts may be ineffective is because they typically target nuisance mosquitoes that bite at dusk, but the Aedes aegypti mosquito is active during the day and bites humans exclusively, according to the report. Additionally, the pest has developed widespread resistance to several insecticides in some parts of the country.

Instead, CDC Director Tom Frieden, MD, told Reuters that health departments should consider a “four corners approach” to killing the mosquitoes indoors and outdoors, and including both larvae and adult insects. Dr. Frieden shared his concerns at the CDC’s Zika Action Plan Summit in Atlanta on Friday.