The Entomological Sciences Division (ESD) Supports Army Public Health through the development of entomological programs and tools focused on risk assessment, monitoring, analysis, and mitigation efforts. Our efforts focus on maximizing readiness through the protection of Soldiers, their families and DoD civilians from the health threats posed by vector-borne disease and medically important pests such as; stinging insects, poisonous plants and venomous animals. The ESD focuses on development of standardized vector surveillance data monitoring tools, pesticide resistance monitoring, commercial off the shelf testing of surveillance equipment, pesticide use monitoring, specialized training needs, and the development of knowledge products.
The ESD is a multidisciplinary division providing services to multiple U.S. Army and DoD organizations, providing programs and products to support the entomological requirements of regional Public Health Commands, as well as Army and DoD Policy needs. The ESD is internally organized to maximize our support in these efforts and is comprised of three branches as shown below.
Vector Data Management and Analysis Branch—Supports Army Public Health through the monitoring of vector surveillance activities Army-wide. Functions as the Entomological Sciences Division program integration and data informatics center, taking data generated from other Branches and integrating with Army Installation surveillance data to provide analytics in support of Division and Army Public Health needs. Branch programs and services include—
- Development of standardized data platforms that integrate and archive installation surveillance data with laboratory identification and pathogen testing activities.
- Surveillance data analytics to support ESD and regional Public Health Command needs.
- Basic spatial mapping services.
- Predictive modelling.
- Study design and statistical support for ESD COTS testing efforts.
- Data integration for knowledge products.
- Data management support for pesticide resistance monitoring activities.
- Entomology and public health policy development support.
Program Development and Education Branch: Support health readiness and deployment health mission for the Army personnel and communities by providing consultative services and up-to-date informational and educational products on emerging entomological and zoological public health threats. Branch products and services include:
- Educational and Informational Material: We create fact sheets, posters, cards, and videos on emerging vector-borne disease risks; disease prevention strategies; and hazardous and poisonous plants and animals found in garrison and field operating environments.
- Entomological and Zoonotic Operational Risk Assessments (EZORAs): In collaboration with the Veterinary Services and Public Health Sanitation Directorate, we create country-specific EZORA documents to help public health and military medical planners conduct pre-deployment planning and accurately assess vector-borne diseases, poisonous plants, and venomous animal risks during deployments and contingency operations.
- Stored-Product Pests Services: We offer DoD-wide stored-product pest identification services, pest management guidance, and hands-on training for preventive medicine and food inspection personnel. We maintain live colonies of common food-infesting beetles and moths and use these live insects to enhance training and create reference kits for pest management professionals.
Pesticide Use and Resistance Monitoring Branch: Controlling insect pest such as mosquitoes, ticks, bed bugs, cockroaches, and filth flies are a major concern when strategies involve pesticides. Many insects become resistant to pesticides from overuse, which can genetically or environmentally change how insects respond to pesticides. As military personnel travel to various locations for deployment, humanitarian efforts, or permanent change of stations; Soldiers, dependents, and Civilian personnel are potentially at risk of being exposed to vector-borne diseases. Understanding different modes of action and classes of pesticides used are key to reducing resistance and improving control efforts. Branch services include—
- CDC Bottle Assay test
- Molecular PCR knock down resistance test
- Pesticide Selection Consultation
- DoD Pesticide Hotline
- Pest Control Operations Archival