Care of Mosquito Nets Toolkit
This toolkit contains resources for program planners and NMCPs related to the care of mosquito nets. It includes formative research tools, protocols, and reports; materials developed for BCC campaigns around care and repair, and tools and questionnaires for evaluating net care behaviors.
What is net care?
Net care refers to actions that will maintain mosquito nets in good condition so they can be used for the prevention of malaria. Caring for nets means preventing damage to nets by handling nets carefully, keeping them away from sources of damage, and washing nets gently and not too often.Repairing nets means closing holes and tears as soon as they appear by stitching, patching, tying knots, or any other method.
The longevity of nets in the field is due to many reasons, including the type of textile used, the weave pattern, stress on the nets due to type of bed and hanging materials, as well as actions performed on the net from tucking and untucking, washing, small children, and in many areas, rats. It is possible that careful handling and ongoing repair of nets would improve the useful life of nets at the household level.
Currently it is unknown if care and repair behaviors at the household level increase the useful life of a net. Research is currently underway to evaluate whether such an intervention is effective. Lengthening the useful life of nets would have significant implications for procurement and net replacement strategies. Nets that currently are supposed to last for 3-5 years are observed to be very torn after much shorter periods of time, limiting their protective capacity. Significant cost-savings would be possible if significant proportions of nets in a given area were to last longer, and allow further spacing between mass distributions or replacement strategies using continuous distribution.
What is new in net care?
The NetWorks project gathered together key information on net care and repair and the role of communication in promoting it. This work is captured in the summary document: ITN Care & Repair: Improving Net Lifespan Through Behavior Change Communication.
Call for resources
This toolkit is an growing collection of resources. Materials and resources that are relevant to net care and repair are welcome additions to this toolkit. Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org with your request to contribute materials.