There was a resurgence of malaria in the mid 1970s. Considering the resurgence of malaria as well as the situation in the neighboring countries, the Government of India in the Ministry of Health had appointed several task forces and Expert Committees on malaria to review the situation. Based on their recommendations, a Modified Plan of Operation to control malaria was evolved, and put into operation from April 1977 onwards. The plan included active and passive surveillance of malaria.
Areas where malaria is widely prevalent have been reclassified and different strategies for spraying of insecticides have been outlined based on some statistics namely the Annual Parasite Incidence. The committee established a network of drug distribution and a fever treatment center. In addition, an urban malaria eradication program was started. Emphasis was laid on health education and malaria research to identify and anti–malarial drugs for resistance.
Since the discovery of DDT in the 1940s, many other insecticides (e.g. malathion. fenitrothion) are available for spraying. The spraying of indoor surfaces of houses with these insecticides is still the most effective measure to kill the adult mosquito.
Man–vector contact can be reduced by other preventive measures such as the use of repellents, protective clothing, bed nets (preferably impregnated with safe, long lasting repellent insecticides), mosquito coils, screening of houses, etc. The methods of personal protection are of great value when properly employed. However, they have rarely been used on a large scale because of the costs involved.
Control of mosquito breeding grounds
Techniques to reduce mosquito breeding sites which include drainage or filling, deepening or flushing management of water levels, changing the salt content of water and intermittent irrigation are among the classical methods of malaria control to which attention is being paid again.
No definitive malarial vaccine has been approved the world over against malaria. A number of vaccines of potential value in controlling malaria are currently under development. A synthetic “Cocktail” vaccine for Plasmodium falciparum, called Spf66 and developed by Dr. M. Pararroyo in Colombia, has been tested extensively in South America and more recently in Africa and South East Asia.