Mosquito-borne diseases are of public health importance in war-torn northern Sri Lanka. The severity of mosquito bites and attitudes of the public toward mosquito problems were investigated using a structured questionnaire among communities in 3 administrative divisions in Jaffna District. One hundred fifty-four households were interviewed during this study. Sixty-four percent of the respondents reported that the mosquito problem was severe in their localities. Fifty-two percent stated that mosquito-biting activity was severe in the evening (1500 h–1900 h), 41% at night (after 1900 h), and 7% throughout the day. Severity of mosquito menace was found to have no association with type of house construction. Seventy-seven percent were able to name at least 1 disease transmitted by mosquitoes. Statistical analysis showed no association between education level and public awareness on mosquito-borne diseases. Nearly 88% were able to identify at least a breeding source of mosquitoes and most of them practice measures to eliminate suitable environments for mosquito breeding. Ninety-six percent used personal protective measures against mosquito bites during some seasons or throughout the year. Mosquito coils were the most commonly used personal protective method followed by bed nets. The monthly expenditure for personal protective measures varied from US$0.19 (LKR 20) to US$3.40 (LKR 350).
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Vol. 23 • No. 2