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IPM and Policy

Exposure to both pests and pesticides poses health problems particularly for those with asthma. Structural Integrated Pest Management (IPM) aims to significantly reduce or eliminate the use of pesticides while controlling pest infestation. What is Integrated Pest Management (IPM)? IPM is a pest control method that uses a variety of complementary strategies to alter the home environment by:

  • Reducing food sources (that attract pests) and places for pests to hide (clutter)
  • Finding out where pests are coming in and sealing them out
  • Placing low toxicity traps and using other pesticides only when absolutely necessary

Through the Healthy Pest Free Housing Initiative, the impact of implementing IPM in several Boston Housing Authority (BHA) developments was evaluated. For information on IPM’s effect on BHA pest complaints, resident quality of life, reduction in pesticide usage and manager job satisfaction, click here.

Because exposure to mice and cockroaches is a potent asthma trigger, HPFHI developed a Business Case to advocate for IPM services for families with asthma to be funded by health insurance click here.

HPFHI also developed resources for residents, and property owners and managers to help them switch from traditional pest management to IPM as well as collected resources from other Boston city organizations to help in the process:


IPM is the use of the most effective and economical means of pest management with the least possible hazard to people, property, and the environment. (Don Rivard, Rivards Resources: IPM)

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Boston Public Health Commission
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