The mission of the Insect Vector Control Division is to provide a service for the protection of the nation’s health from vector borne diseases through the application of safe, effective and economical integration of all appropriate and sustainable vector control measures, which are acceptable to the people of Trinidad and Tobago.
There are several diseases that are transmitted by insects or other organisms in Trinidad and Tobago that are potentially hazardous to the health of citizens. Some of these diseases include dengue fever, malaria, yellow fever, West Nile virus, and hairy-moth infestation (which causes allergic skin reactions and respiratory ailments). Insects, animals or other organisms that are capable of spreading disease to humans are called vectors. The Insect Vector Control Unit of the Ministry of Health monitors and controls these insect and organism vectors. The Unit also works in areas that have been flooded to prevent outbreaks of disease.
Insect vector control services
You should contact the Insect Vector Control Unit if any of the following occurs:
- You have been diagnosed with dengue fever, malaria, yellow fever, West Nile virus, hairy-moth infestation or any other insect or organism-borne disease.
- Members of your family, village or community have been diagnosed with any of the illnesses listed above.
- Your community or area has been flooded and you are concerned about the outbreak of disease.
- Your community or area has an unusually severe infestation of insects or other organisms that may spread disease.
The Insect Vector Control Unit will visit your area to assess the situation and will carry out appropriate measures to control the insect or organism vectors, if necessary. Contact information for the Unit can be found at the bottom of this page.
Travelling to areas with malaria
If you plan to travel to a country or area where malaria is present, you should visit the Unit prior to your departure. Staff at the Unit can give you malaria prophylaxis (drugs that help protect you against malaria) and advice on how to avoid infection. Please note that you must start taking malaria prophylaxis drugs one week prior to your departure and for four weeks after leaving the malarial area. If you have a fever following a visit to a country in which malaria is common, you must contact the Unit immediately. Malaria can be fatal, especially if it is not treated promptly.
How long does it take to access these services?
Insect complaints are usually addressed within two weeks, with malaria prevention or treatment being addressed immediately. Post-flooding management services to schools, residences, and other government buildings are executed as soon as possible after the flood waters have subsided.
Where can I find more information?
For further information, please contact the Insect Vector Unit of the Ministry of Health.
Insect Vector Unit
Ministry of Health
3 Queen Street
Phone: (868) 663-2281/6
Opening hours: 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., Monday to Friday, except public holidays.