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Aedes Egypti mosquito

Cases of Dengue Confirmed on Island

The Ministry of Health and Social Services has reported the presence of laboratory-confirmed dengue fever as well as probable cases of the virus on the island.

Dengue fever is a potentially life-threatening illness, spreading to humans via the bite of an infected Aedes Aegypti mosquito. Infected persons experience high fever, intense headaches, bone and joint pain, pain behind the eyes, nausea and/or vomiting as well as rash.

Health Officials noted that there is no specific treatment for dengue; however, the timely detection of cases to identify any warning signs of severe dengue infection is important to prevent fatality. Individuals experiencing symptoms should therefore access medical attention as soon as possible at a Health Centre or Private Doctor.

Considering this health threat, Principal Environmental Health Officer, Garrett Stanley, urged residents to take the necessary precautionary measures to prevent the spread of the vector borne disease. He stated, “To control the spread of the virus we must decrease the mosquito index on island. At this time residents must give the utmost priority to eradicating breeding sites at their homes and places of business. They must conduct inspections and eliminate all sources of standing water that allow mosquitoes to breed”. Common breeding sites that home business owners should pay attention to include garbage bins, vases and drip trays, dish drainers, bottles, buckets and drums for water collection, pet bowls, drains and guttering, swimming pools and old tires.

Mr. Stanley also indicated that the Vector Control Team was on stand-by to assist residents with inspections should they be unable to locate breeding sites on their premises. The team can be contacted on 491-6057.

It was further recommended by Health Officials that residents protect themselves and persons in their care from bites by using repellents containing DEET, using screens and mosquito nets and wearing long, loose, light clothing to cover the arms and legs.