The Success Story of KwaZulu-Natal
A comprehensive change in anti-malarial policy in the South African province of KwaZulu-Natal in the year 2000 included the use of DDT in insecticide residual spraying (IRS). After the addition of DDT to the insectide spraying, as well as a change in front-line drug therapy, the facilities which introduced the changes, consisting of 1 hospital and 9 clinics, treated 21,874 fewer cases of malaria between 2000 and 2002.
Anne Mills and Sam Shillcutt of the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine said the interventions, including DDT, were “hugely successful,” and Jacques van der Gaag, a professor of development economics at the University of Amsterdam, called the program shift in KwaZulu-Natal “highly successful.”
Vernon L. Smith, a Nobel laureate and professor of economics and law at George Mason University has said, “The great success of KuaZulu Natel resulting from the use of insecticide spray (40 per cent DDT, 60 per cent delta methrin) and combination drug therapies shows that major reductions in malaria cases can be achieved.”
In 2004, a group of economists and policy experts ranked a series of solutions to global problems in order to find which issues posed the best opportunities for significant progress. Overall, the Copenhagen Consensus expert panel ranked the control of malaria in their top category of “very good projects.”
Source: Global Crises, Global Solutions, ed. Bjørn Lomborg (New York: Cambridge University Press, 2004).