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Skip to 0 minutes and 13 secondsWell we've now reached the end of the course. Over the last three weeks we've heard from experts from around the world exploring the current status of the Zika and the health challenges we face. We've looked at the biology and behaviour of the Aedes mosquito, an important process when thinking about how to plan control efforts and we've covered in great detail the methods available for vector control, while acknowledging that there is no single "magic bullet" for the control of Aedes mosquitoes at present.

Skip to 0 minutes and 41 secondsIn fact, we've heard that there's a lack of evidence for impact of Aedes control generally, but this is not necessarily because vector control doesn't work it's more because there's a lack of well-designed studies and importantly a lack of studies with epidemiological outcomes that demonstrate an impact on disease transmission. Science is progressing all the time and we have seen new technologies emerge that show great potential, such as GM mosquitoes and Wolbachia bacteria. We should also be looking at how best to evaluate current tools as well as these future technologies in randomised controlled trials to build an evidence base from which accurate recommendations for vector control can be made.

Skip to 1 minute and 22 secondsIt's likely that an integrated approach using a combination of tools and technologies will deliver when it comes to stemming the spread of Zika in endemic countries, preventing it in countries that are at risk and allowing us to rapidly respond to outbreaks in the future. It's vital that we're better prepared for outbreaks of vector borne diseases and we hope that this course has equipped you with a good level of understanding of Zika and the Aedes mosquito and its control. Although we focused on Zika, this material in this course extends far beyond this disease and maybe applicable to a number of vector borne diseases including dengue, chikungunya and, even in some cases, malaria.

Skip to 2 minutes and 3 secondsOn a personal note, myself and the team at the London School have thoroughly enjoyed working with the experts gathered to develop the course, and have learned a great deal from our interactions with both them and you. We'd like to thank everyone who's contributed and to thank you to for participating. We are living in a changing world when it comes to vector borne diseases, and we will undoubtedly see outbreaks like this again in the future. I hope this course is a step towards better understanding of how we can be more prepared.

Summary of Week 3 and the course

We have now reached the end of both Week 3 and the course itself. Over the past 3 weeks we have heard from experts from around the world, exploring the current status of the Zika outbreak and the health challenges we face. We have looked at the biology and behaviour of the Aedes mosquito and how knowledge of these can influence our approach to planning control efforts. We have also covered a variety of methods available for vector control, all the while acknowledging that there is no single ‘magic bullet’ for control of the Aedes mosquito.

We are living in a changing world when it comes to vector-borne disease and we will undoubtedly see outbreaks like this again. We hope this course has equipped you with a better understanding of vector control not just in the context of Zika virus, but in a way that extends far beyond this disease to others such as dengue, chikungunya, and in some cases even malaria.

As in previous weeks we have been following your discussions in the Comments section. We will again provide a Discussion Themes document to clarify any frequently raised questions and summarise key points made in the Downloads section of this step.

A final word

We would like to thank you all for joining us and for your thoughtful and engaging conversations throughout the course. The course team has learned a great deal while developing the course, and we hope that you have enjoyed participating as much as we have enjoyed reading the thoughts, experiences, and reflections of such a global group of learners.

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This video is from the free online course:

Preventing the Zika Virus: Understanding and Controlling the Aedes Mosquito

London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine

Course highlights Get a taste of this course before you join: