To support countries of the SEARO and WPRO regions to fulfill their obligations to the Stockholm Convention, an inter-regional workshop was held from 22-24 July 2008 in Bangkok, Thailand. The meeting was organized by the World Health Organization in a collaborative effort with the Secretariat of the Stockholm Convention. The objectives of the workshop were to:
- Assess the national capacities for DDT reporting in relation to vector disease management strategies;
- Prepare and recommend ways to improve the capacity to collect, collate and share such data;
- Document the implementation of sustainable DDT alternatives for disease vector control.
Participants included representatives from Ministries of Health, Ministries of Environment and Ministries of Agriculture from Myanmar, Thailand, China, Papua New Guinea and Solomon Island. Also present were a representative from the Secretariat of the Stockholm Convention, WHO representatives from SEARO WPRO and HQ/GMP.
During the meeting, participants were divided into two groups. Both groups reviewed the existing data reporting mechanisms for pesticide management; identified data reporting constraints and made recommendations to strengthen such mechanisms; assessed the existing vector control operations within the context of sustainable alternatives to DDT; identified constraints to the implementation of such alternatives and recommended on how best to address those constraints.
In general, the participants recommended the following measures:
- Strengthen national and regional capacity for vector resistance monitoring;
- Strengthen national and regional capacity to promote and implement IVM (including training, advocacy, political commitment, etc.);
- WHO SEARO to create a regional network for the monitoring of human and environmental impact of pesticides used for disease vector control.
The group also investigated areas of priority that deserved immediate attention and made the following proposals for possible funding by the Global Environment Facility. These include:
- Needs assessment for disease vector control;
- Develop/update national policy and legislation for disease vector control and IVM including insecticides used in public health;
- The repackaging and disposal of obsolete DDT stocks and wastes and decontamination of storage facilities.