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    • Minister of Health, Hon. Dr. Fenton Ferguson, says the country should begin to see a decline in the number of persons impacted by the Chikungunya virus (CHIK-V), in December.
    • The Minister was speaking at a seminar on: ‘Pest Management and Infection Control: Impact on the Labour Force’, held on November 20, at Manpower and Maintenance Services Limited, in Kingston.
    • The Ministry has reported that there has been a significant decline in new cases in the eastern parishes, including St. Thomas, Kingston and St. Andrew and St. Catherine, and an increase in the numbers being seen in the western part of the island.

    Minister of Health, Hon. Dr. Fenton Ferguson, says the country should begin to see a decline in the number of persons impacted by the Chikungunya virus (CHIK-V), in December.

    “Our expectation is that by December thereabout, you should be seeing a toning down, but we have to be mindful of those households who still have it,” Dr. Ferguson said.

    The Minister was speaking at a seminar on: ‘Pest Management and Infection Control: Impact on the Labour Force’, held on November 20, at Manpower and Maintenance Services Limited, in Kingston.

    The Ministry has reported that there has been a significant decline in new cases in the eastern parishes, including St. Thomas, Kingston and St. Andrew and St. Catherine, and an increase in the numbers being seen in the western part of the island.

    Dr. Ferguson informed that there are plans to undertake a study on the impact of the virus on the country.

    “Some of the things that are being reported during the outbreak are almost unique to Jamaica. You would have heard, in the first instance, that it would affect your ankles, wrists (and some other areas), but then persons who have been impacted will tell you they have pain in almost every organ. So, what we are seeing is deserving of a study,” he explained.

    Meanwhile, Dr. Ferguson informed that the Ministry has so far trained over 2,100 health care workers as part of the Ebola emergency response.

    He added that the Ministry has also completed 13 protocols in relation to the Ebola Virus. “This include the question of burial…that is very critical, because the virus is contracted by contact, whether human to human or animal to human,” the Minister said.

    Ebola, formerly known as Ebola haemorrhagic fever, is a viral illness that is often severe and fatal in humans. According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), the initial symptoms include fever, weakness, muscle pain and sore throat, all of which can be overlooked as symptoms of common illnesses.

    However, as the virus spreads through the body, the symptoms become more acute and include vomiting, diarrhoea and in some cases both internal and external bleeding.

    Ebola has an incubation period of two to 21 days between infection and symptoms.

     

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