Tuesday, 10 June 2014


Last week (3rd June), scientists from repellent testing facility arctec at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine launched Bug Off - the first ever 'Insect Repellent Awareness Day' to highlight the issue.  They recommend applying repellents containing 20-50% DEET to the skin when in countries with diseases spread by insects, such as malaria and dengue fever.  People have expressed concerns about the safety of DEET which led to a number of investigations. However, the scientists behind Bug Off have carried out a review of published studies and conclude that there is insufficient evidence to show that DEET is unsafe. The review is published in the open access journal Parasites and Vectors - see here.  For the full press release see here.
The website for the bug-off initiative is found at http://www.bug-off.org/  This website has detail about the science, FAQs on repellents, a podcast and  includes some great educational materials for children and resource packs for teachers.  Click on the image below to download a useful poster you could put up in a GP surgery or travel clinic waiting room.