The current debate on how best to deal with tsetse-transmitted
trypanosomiasis focuses on issues of scale, sustainability and cost.
Much of the discussion on the costs of the different methods is based on
comparisons from different countries, calculated at different times,
including different cost components for projects with different
management structures, duration and objectives.
To inform the debate about which approaches could be used in Uganda, new
cost estimates for large scale tsetse elimination operations have been
produced. These include management overheads, estimates for maintaining
barriers and are annualised over several years. They are also
underpinned by the results of modelling the impact of the different
techniques on isolated and non-isolated tsetse populations. The results
for isolated populations confirmed the accepted ranking of costs per sq
km cleared of tsetse: insecticide-treated cattle (US$ 130-400) traps
used against savanna flies (US$ 400-500), aerial spraying (US$ 500-600),
traps for riverine flies (US$ 900) and suppression followed by release
of sterile males (US$ 1,000-1,300). The relative ranking is robust but
the costs are highly sensitive to certain assumptions: whether the
tsetse population is isolated; the amount of management, accompanying
research and monitoring required; the method of insecticide application
for insecticide-treated cattle and the fact that the cost of sterile
male production and release is necessarily additional to prior
investment in suppression. For the many situations where tsetse
populations are not isolated, targets, traps or insecticide-treated
cattle would need to be deployed as barriers to reinvasion; thus
possibly requiring the use of more than one technique.
The report concludes that there is a real need to achieve a consensus on
the suitability of different techniques for dealing with tsetse in
different situations. To this end, past schemes need to be reviewed and
guidelines need to be agreed upon as to which approaches are technically
feasible / optimal under which conditions (of habitat, fly species
combinations etc.). In view of substantial cost differentials among the
different approaches, economic considerations must be included among the
criteria for choice of technique for tsetse elimination, especially
given the multiple demands on financial resources for such initiatives,
which are working towards the over-arching goal of poverty alleviation.
A two page executive summary is also available in addition to this
PPLPI, FAO, Rome, Italy, vii+51 pp.