Baugh: Move quickly to contain Chik-V
NAMING AT least four parishes he says are now battling a full blown epidemic of chikungunya (Chik-V), senior medical practitioner and opposition spokesman on health Dr Kenneth Baugh wants the Government to move with alacrity to contain the rapid spread of the disease locally.
Kingston and St Andrew, St Thomas and St Catherine are especially hard hit by the mosquito-borne disease, Baugh told journalists yesterday during a press conference at the Jamaica Labour Party's (JLP) New Kingston headquarters.
"We are not scaremongering, as I have been accused of; these are the facts and we feel that it is very important for people to be seized of the facts so they can take corrective action in their own personal lives and in their community," Baugh asserted.
More fogging needed
The JLP spokesman on health said the Government was not carrying out enough fogging in St Catherine and St Thomas where there are high numbers of reported cases.
Noting that intensive corrective action must be taken now, Baugh said he has advised Health Minister Dr Fenton Ferguson to "set up a command centre with telephone numbers known so that people can call in to give information about the epidemic in their communities and for people to get information as to what to do."
In his comments yesterday, Baugh noted that the outbreak of chikungunya has primarily affected the south coast for now but cautioned that the Government should take the necessary steps to contain the disease and prevent it from spreading to the rest of the country, including tourist resort areas.
Baugh argued that people in the tourist centres also have a duty to make certain that they keep that area clear of the vectors that can transmit the disease.
Reduce spread of Chik-V by:
Getting rid of old tyres and containers in which water can settle
Punch holes in tins before disposing
Cover large drums, barrels and tanks holding water.