JIS News

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  • Chief Inspector at the Kingston and St. Andrew Public Health Department, Everton Baker, is urging the public to take care of the environment, as the country continues to deal with the effects of the Chikungunya virus (CHIK-V).
  • Mr. Baker also urged persons to pay attention to their swimming pools and ensure that the wastes from the pool are disposed of in a proper manner.
  • He pointed out that the Health Department checked over 41,000 homes from June to October 2014, with just under 7,000 homes found with breeding sites for the Aedes Aegypti mosquitoes.

Chief  Inspector at the Kingston and St. Andrew  Public Health Department, Everton Baker, is urging the public to take care of the environment, as the country continues to deal with the effects of the Chikungunya virus (CHIK-V).

“You should ensure that you inspect your home and ensure that you scrub your vases and even your refrigerator drip tray (to get rid of the mosquitoes),” Mr. Baker  said.

He was speaking at the Kingston and St. Andrew Corporation (KSAC) Town Hall meeting on CHICK-V and other public health issues affecting the municipality, held at Mandela Park on November 13.

Mr. Baker also urged persons to pay attention to their swimming pools and ensure that the wastes from the pool are disposed of  in a proper manner.

“From a community point of view, you also need to report to us where you have abandoned swimming pools,” he added.

The Chief Inspector  said  community based organisations can also play a part in assisting with the clean-up to get rid  of mosquito breeding sites.

“It’s not just the strategy of the Public Health Department we are using. Members of the community can encourage each other to team up to do their own public clean-up in and around the common areas,” Mr. Baker noted.

He pointed out that the Health Department checked over 41,000 homes from June to October 2014, with just under 7,000 homes  found with breeding sites for the Aedes Aegypti mosquitoes.

Meanwhile, Logistics Coordinator for the Government’s National Health Emergency Response Programme, Colonel Daniel Pryce, also reiterated that everybody has a role to play in preventing the spread of the virus.

“Jamaica is afflicted by another virus we call Styrofoam and bottles. Everywhere we go they block up the drains. When you are  tempted to drop the plastic bottle and the Styrofoam box… remember CHICK-V and  Dengue,” Colonel Pryce told the audience.

The most common symptoms of  CHIK-V include high fever; joint pain, mainly in the ankles, toes, fingers, elbows, wrists and knees; headache, muscle pain and a rash which may last up to 10 days. Other symptoms  include back pain, chills, weakness, fatigue, nausea and vomiting.

All parishes are now impacted by Chikungunya, with increasing numbers being seen in the western part of the island. There has been a significant decline in new cases in the eastern parishes, including St. Thomas, Kingston and St. Andrew and St. Catherine.

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