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Determinants of compliance with anti-vectorial protective measures among non-immune travellers during missions to tropical Africa

Emmanuel Sagui12, Noémie Resseguier1, Vanessa Machault1, Lénaïck Ollivier13, Eve Orlandi-Pradines1, Gaetan Texier13, Frédéric Pages1, Remy Michel3, Bruno Pradines1, Sébastien Briolant1, Alain Buguet4, Catherine Tourette-Turgis5 and Christophe Rogier16*

Author Affiliations

1 Field Infectiology Department, Institute for Biomedical Research of the French Armed Forces (IRBA) & URMITE UMR6236, Allée du Médecin Colonel Jamot, Parc du Pharo, BP60109, 13262 Marseille Cedex 07, France

2 Hôpital d'Instruction des Armées Laveran, BP 60149, 13384 Marseille Cedex 13, France

3 Département d'épidémiologie et de santé publique & EA3283, Parc du Pharo, 13262 Marseille Cedex 07, France

4 EA4170 Free Radicals, Energy Substrates and Physiopathology, Claude-Bernard Lyon I University, 8 Avenue Rockefeller, 69373 Lyon Cedex 08, France

5 Institut d'éducation thérapeutique, Fondation partenariale, University Pierre et Marie Curie, Paris 6, and University of Rouen, France

6 Institut Pasteur de Madagascar, B.P. 1274, 101 Antananarivo, Madagascar

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Malaria Journal 2011, 10:232  doi:10.1186/1475-2875-10-232

Published: 10 August 2011



The effectiveness of anti-vectorial malaria protective measures in travellers and expatriates is hampered by incorrect compliance. The objective of the present study was to identify the determinants of compliance with anti-vectorial protective measures (AVPMs) in this population that is particularly at risk because of their lack of immunity.


Compliance with wearing long clothing, sleeping under insecticide-impregnated bed nets (IIBNs) and using insect repellent was estimated and analysed by questionnaires administered to 2,205 French military travellers from 20 groups before and after short-term missions (approximately four months) in six tropical African countries (Senegal, Ivory Coast, Chad, Central African Republic, Gabon and Djibouti). For each AVPM, the association of "correct compliance" with individual and collective variables was investigated using random-effect mixed logistic regression models to take into account the clustered design of the study.


The correct compliance rates were 48.6%, 50.6% and 18.5% for wearing long clothing, sleeping under bed nets and using repellents, respectively. Depending on the AVPM, correct compliance was significantly associated with the following factors: country, older than 24 years of age, management responsibilities, the perception of a personal malaria risk greater than that of other travellers, the occurrence of life events, early bedtime (i.e., before midnight), the type of stay (field operation compared to training), the absence of medical history of malaria, the absence of previous travel in malaria-endemic areas and the absence of tobacco consumption.

There was no competition between compliance with the different AVPMs or between compliance with any AVPM and malaria chemoprophylaxis.


Interventions aimed at improving compliance with AVPMs should target young people without management responsibilities who are scheduled for non-operational activities in countries with high risk of clinical malaria. Weak associations between compliance and history of clinical malaria or variables that pertain to threat perception suggest that cognition-based interventions referencing a "bad experience" with clinical malaria could have only a slight impact on the improvement of compliance. Further studies should focus on the cognitive and behavioural predictors of compliance with AVPMs.