Table of Contents
Conference Papers in Mathematics
Volume 2013, Article ID 658468, 8 pages
Conference Paper

An Optimal Control Approach to Malaria Prevention via Insecticide-Treated Nets

Center for Research and Development in Mathematics and Applications (CIDMA), Department of Mathematics, University of Aveiro, 3810-193 Aveiro, Portugal

Received 10 May 2013; Accepted 9 June 2013

Academic Editors: B. N. Datta, G. S. F. Frederico, N. Martins, and A. J. Zaslavski

This Conference Paper is based on a presentation given by Delfim F. M. Torres at “The Cape Verde International Days on Mathematics 2013” held from 22 April 2013 to 25 April 2013 in Praia, Cape Verde.

Copyright © 2013 Cristiana J. Silva and Delfim F. M. Torres. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Malaria is a life threatening disease, entirely preventable and treatable, provided that the currently recommended interventions are properly implemented. These interventions include vector control through the use of insecticide-treated nets (ITNs). However, ITN possession is not necessarily translated into use. Human behavior change interventions, including information, education, communication (IEC) campaigns and postdistribution hang-up campaigns, are strongly recommended. In this paper, we consider a recent mathematical model for the effects of ITNs on the transmission dynamics of malaria infection, which takes into account the human behavior. We introduce in this model a supervision control, representing IEC campaigns for improving the ITN usage. We propose and solve an optimal control problem where the aim is to minimize the number of infected humans while keeping the cost as low as possible. Numerical results are provided, which show the effectiveness of the optimal control interventions.