JIS News

Story Highlights

  • More than 100 temporary vector-control workers have been engaged in St. Elizabeth to continue the fight against mosquito-borne diseases in the parish.
  • Speaking at the monthly meeting of the St. Elizabeth Municipal Corporation in Black River on October 10, Medical Officer of Health at the St. Elizabeth Health Services, Dr. Tonia Dawkins-Beharie, said the temporary workers, in addition to permanent staff, have been diligent in vector-control activities and public education.
  • “In St. Elizabeth over the past few weeks, the health department has been getting increasing reports on dengue cases, so we have been responding accordingly,” Dr. Dawkins-Beharie said.

More than 100 temporary vector-control workers have been engaged in St. Elizabeth to continue the fight against mosquito-borne diseases in the parish.

Speaking at the monthly meeting of the St. Elizabeth Municipal Corporation in Black River on October 10, Medical Officer of Health at the St. Elizabeth Health Services, Dr. Tonia Dawkins-Beharie, said the temporary workers, in addition to permanent staff, have been diligent in vector-control activities and public education.

“In St. Elizabeth over the past few weeks, the health department has been getting increasing reports on dengue cases, so we have been responding accordingly,” Dr. Dawkins-Beharie said.

Dengue is a mosquito-borne disease in which a person may get a fever, headache, joint and muscle pains.

“Our strategies for vector control are multiple. We have workers out in the field going into all the communities, giving information to all our citizens as well as searching for, and destroying [mosquito] breeding sites,” the Medical Officer said.

Dr. Dawkins-Beharie explained that in the daytime, vector-control activities are focused on source reduction and getting rid of the breeding sites, while fogging mostly takes place at nights.

She also reiterated the need for proper management of solid waste in St. Elizabeth.

“Solid waste management is a critical component in the management of these dengue outbreaks that we are experiencing. It is important that garbage is collected in a timely manner, because when rain falls, the water collects within these sites that have a collection of garbage, and it’s very likely that mosquitoes will breed at these sites,” Dr. Dawkins-Beharie said.

She is urging residents to take care of their homes and workplaces to ensure that they protect themselves from being bitten by mosquitos.

“Wear long-sleeved clothing, ensure that the place of work or home is meshed, use destroyers or any other repellants to protect yourselves from being bitten, in addition to searching and destroying breeding sites,” Dr. Dawkins-Beharie said.

“Dengue is a serious condition. It can kill, and we encourage every single citizen to help us all to do the right things to prevent and control this outbreak,” she added.