Report cases of hand, foot and mouth disease
The Ministry of Health is urging school administrators to report any case of hand, foot and mouth disease to their parish health departments. School administrators can also request assistance from the health departments in their respective parishes if they believe that they may have a case of the disease in their school.
This comes in light of an increase in reports of cases of hand, foot and mouth disease in Kingston and St Andrew, as well as St Catherine. In the meantime, the Ministry of Health is providing information on the disease so that parents and schools are equipped to take the required actions to reduce the spread of the virus.
Chief Medical Officer Dr Winston De La Haye is reminding parents "to keep infected children at home for at least seven days as this disease is highly contagious. School administrators should regularly clean and disinfect areas, especially places where young children frequent."
Children can become infected with the virus from other children through close contact, such as hugging or sharing cups and eating utensils, contact with faeces as well as other contaminated objects and surfaces. There is no vaccine to prevent the disease. However, simple steps like regular handwashing and practising good hygiene can help reduce the risk of infection.
Individuals who wish to obtain more information on hand, foot and mouth disease may call the Ministry of Health at 1-888-ONE-LOVE (1-888-663-5683) or the parish health department. Persons may also visit the website at moh.gov.jm.