Budget cuts at local authorities have delayed the launch of insecticide-spraying programs to curb the annual onset of mosquitoes, meaning that certain high-risk areas remain unprotected.
To be effective, the spraying programs should be carried out from mid-March to the end of April, according to Health Ministry sources, but in most areas they have yet to begin, according to a report in Ethnos newspaper. Meanwhile the unseasonably high temperatures this spring have led to mosquitoes arriving earlier than usual, some carrying infections like the West Nile Virus.
Spraying has already begun in eastern Attica, which is a relatively high risk area for mosquitoes, but districts close to rivers or parks – the banks of the Kifissos River and Pedion tou Areas – have yet to be blitzed. The most high risk areas are Ileia, Achia, Aetoloacarnania, Messinia, Argolida and Evros.