Health Ministry awaiting results of probable case of microcephaly
The Health Ministry says it is awaiting the result of a sample being tested for the Zika virus taken from the first baby in Jamaica suspected have been born with microcephaly in recent times.
Microcephaly is a birth defect where a baby is born with a small head because of partial brain development.
Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Winston De La Haye, says the baby was born in late December at the Victoria Jubilee Hospital in Kingston and whose mother had a rash and a fever during pregnancy.
De La Haye says the ministry was notified about the probable case of microcephaly on January 10 and since then it has been actively handling the case.
He says up to January 13 the Health Ministry received 774 notifications about pregnant women and the Zika virus of which 650 were suspected cases.
According to De La Haye, 77 pregnant women were confirmed by lab tests to have the virus.
De La Haye says some of those mothers have given birth but none of their babies have showed signs of microcephaly.
He also says the health ministry continues to monitor all suspected cases and is also providing support to pregnant mothers.
Jamaicans are being reminded by the health ministry to delay pregnancy in light of the risks associated with Zika.
Pregnant women are being urged to work closely with their health care providers.