Chik-V has not yet peaked, says C'bean health official
Jerome Reynolds, Staff Reporter
The Executive Director of the Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA), Dr. James Hospedales, says the chikungunya virus is yet to peak in the region.
The Caribbean recorded its first case last December and since then, thousands of persons have been infected.
Hospedales says as at September 27 there have been 15,000 confirmed cases and about 750,000 suspected cases.
Additionally, the CARPHA head says 152 deaths have been recorded.
He notes that the number of cases on the ground greatly exceed what is being reported.
Hospedales says based on these trends it is clear that chikungunya is here to stay and will become endemic in the Caribbean.
The CARPHA head is urging Caribbean governments to strengthen their vector control measures.
Citizens are also being urged to play their part by protecting themselves.
Hospedales was speaking last night at a public forum put on by the Medical Association of Jamaica.
Meanwhile, Health Minister Dr. Fenton Ferguson, who was speaking at the same event, said Jamaica’s vector control programme is ongoing.
Ferguson said the programme includes destroying mosquito breeding sites, ensuring the availability of medication and extending opening hours at health facilities.
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