An enhanced vector-borne disease digital surveillance platform for areas under threat of extreme hydro-meteorological events (HydroVec)


  • Dr Michelle Stanton

    Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine, United Kingdom

Project summary

The frequency and scale of extreme hydro-meteorological events (heavy rainfall, storms, floods, drought) is predicted to increase due to climate change. These events, of which flooding is the deadliest, disproportionately affect those in low socio-economic groups in low- and middle-income countries. In Southern Malawi, the geographical focus of this proposal, the most recent flooding event (Jan 2022) resulted in one million people requiring humanitarian assistance, displacing approximately 200,000 people, and devastating vital infrastructure.

Flooding is known to also impact vector-borne diseases exposure; however, the nature of this relationship is understudied, and there is a lack of guidance on how to use this association to guide risk mitigation activities. 

The primary goal of this proposal is to develop an enhanced vector-borne disease digital surveillance platform for forecasting transmission risk in areas vulnerable to extreme hydro-meteorological events. Using a spatio-temporal statistical modelling framework to gain insights into how flooding affects malaria within Southern Malawi, we will work closely with key governmental and humanitarian agencies in Malawi to design a user-centric, sustainable, and scalable digital platform to demonstrate how risk information can be used to guide both proactive and responsive vector-borne disease control policy and practice in flood-prone areas.