Four catch dengue in Cayman
(CNS): Updated -- Government officials have confirmed that four cases of dengue fever have been contracted locally and there could be more. Dr Kiran Kumar, the medical officer of health, said Thursday that of seven recent cases only three had reported a travel history to endemic countries, meaning the remaining cases were contracted here in the Cayman Islands. The senior public health expert urged everyone to take precautions against getting bitten but not to panic. The MRCU has stepped up its operations, especially in the West Bay area where the patients that have contracted dengue came from, which the director of the unit said is proving to be effective.
“While there are only a few confirmed cases, there is a possibility that there are some persons with mild dengue symptoms who have not sought medical attention,” he said. “I am therefore requesting that our residents be alert, take preventative measures, and do not panic. The Mosquito Research and Control Unit (MRCU) has been informed of all cases under investigation in order that adequate mosquito control measures can be taken.”
Dr Kumar explained that for the Aedes aegypti mosquito to transmit dengueit must bite an infected person and then bite others. The local mosquitoes are not carrying the disease but have themselves picked up the dengue from an infected individual. “It is essential for everyone to avoid mosquito bites by covering up during the late afternoon when the dengue carrier, the Aedes aegypti mosquito, is at its peak,” Dr Kumar added.
With what may only be a very small number of infected mosquitoes on Grand Cayman responsible for passing on the dengue fever, the MRCU is working hard to ensure that the Aedes aegypti numbers are kept down. The MRCU are focusing their efforts in West Bay in addition to the regular schedule of aerial spraying and misting.
“I want to assure the public that the Mosquito Research & Control Unit has already intensified its efforts in the areas where most of the cases were confirmed, and since Monday included aerial operations, ground spraying, thermal fogging and larviciding, in their operations," said Dr William Petrie, the director at the MRCU.
“Since the first detection of dengue in West Bay, ground control operations have continued on a daily basis, against both larval and adult mosquitoes. All areas around confirmed and suspected Dengue cases have now been treated,” he added.
Work crews have carried out thermal-fogging of a 600 meter radius around the patient's residence and a nearby school was surveyed and treated as well as all yards in the area. Following this initial treatment, MRCU work crews have continued thermal fogging and to date have treated an area of over 400 acres in the Birch Tree Hill area in West Bay.
In addition to thermal fogging and larval control, the area was treated with a truck mounted cold fog sprayer on the evening of 11 October and the morning of 12 October. Aerial control operations, which were added to supplement ground control, began on 15 October once weather and environmental conditions were suitable, the MRCU stated.
Aerial control operations using Mosquito-Mist adulticide spray commenced on 15 October and initial case studies showed the treatment to be effective at killing adult mosquitoes.
Dr. Petrie said MRCU routinely sprays and carries out control operations against the mosquito long before the locally contracted case of Dengue.
“MRCU will maintain control activities in the area to ensure that transmission of the virus has been interrupted. Aerial control operations will continue on a twice weekly basis at 5:0 pm in the West Bay area and the success of these missions will be monitored by cage study trials and monitoring the larval population.
Cayman has had a limited number of locally contracted cases in the past. Officials said that in 2010, there were 61 dengue investigations, resulting in seven confirmed dengue cases, four of whom had no travel history. In 2011, there were 21 investigations, two were confirmed positive, and one of whom had no travel history. As of 12 October this year, 26 cases have been investigated with seven now confirmed; another eight people came up negative and results are pending for the remaining eleven.
So far this year, 17 of 23 Caribbean countries have reported over 1,500 confirmed dengue fever cases. According to the Caribbean Epidemiology Centre (CAREC) Surveillance Report, as of August 2012, Belize, Guyana, Suriname, Jamaica and Curacao account for approximately 87% of the cases reported in the region. Recently, Jamaica reported 1215 suspected dengue cases and five suspected deaths. About half of the suspected dengue cases have occurred in the areas of Kingston and St. Andrew.
Anyone travelling to endemic areas is advised to avoid mosquito bites, and if they develop dengue symptoms within two to three weeks of returning home should consult their physician and tell the doctor about their travel history.
Following news of the four confirmed cases of dengue in Cayman and just ahead of the National Health Conference, Health Minister Mark Scotland said he was pleased that the necessary steps are being taken by the Public Health department and MRCU.
“I encourage every resident to do their part and ensure that all containers and other items that can store water are removed from their yards in order to discourage the breeding of the mosquitoes,” he said.
For more advice on mosquito control, contact MRCU on 949-2557 in Grand Cayman, or 948-2223 in Cayman Brac; and DEH on 949-6696 in Grand Cayman, or 948-2321 in Cayman Brac.
See dengue fever fact sheet below.
|Dengue Fact Sheet.doc||663 KB|
- **Botanical Slimming MSV - Strong Version***
- South Side Beach House for Sale
- 3.05 acres of Bluff land
- Large Spot Bay beach lot
- Affordable inland bluff lot
- 3 Bedroom house for sale
- Inland Bluff Lot wiith a view
- Affordable inland bluff lot
- Cayman Brac Braccanal Parade – Traffic Advisory
- Fs:BB Porsche P9881,BB Q-10,Z-10 BBM PIN CHAT (29309170)
The comments posted do not necessarily reflect the views of CNS or any individual staff member. All comments are posted subject to approval by CNS. Read more
- He has a lot of confidence?
5 hours 7 sec ago
- You've spoken a mouthful
5 hours 3 min ago
- It was not an earned degree,
5 hours 5 min ago
- Give them the Deal, they were
5 hours 5 min ago
- I think he means the theft of
5 hours 6 min ago
- Sorry, this is just not true.
5 hours 7 min ago
- Willie No-No!
5 hours 9 min ago
- So true, Bobo
5 hours 10 min ago
- Let the truth be told! These
5 hours 11 min ago
- You tell em Willie No-No!
5 hours 12 min ago