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August 22, 2014
Star News


Seven other cases of chikungunya confirmed

The Ministry of Health has confirmed seven additional cases of chikungunya.

Director, Emergency, Disaster Management and Special Services Dr Marion Bullock- DuCasse said the positive results were received today from samples sent to the Caribbean Public Health Agency.

This brings the total number of confirmed cases for Jamaica to 17, 14 from local transmission, two imported, and one still under investigation because of the individual's travel history.

The affected parishes remain St Thomas, St Catherine, St Ann and Kingston and St Andrew.

"I want to emphasis the importance of protecting oneself from mosquito bites, including when travelling to countries with chikungunya transmission. Persons should also get rid of mosquitoes and their breeding sites in and around the home, and be even more vigilant when they have guests from affected areas," Dr Bullock- Ducasse said.

She added that major emphasis has to also be placed on finding and destroying mosquito breeding sites.

Chikungunya is spread by the bite of an infected Aedes aegypti mosquito which is generally found in and around places where people inhabit. Persons are urged to search for and destroy mosquito breeding sites by getting rid of old tyres and containers in which water can settle, punching holes in tins before disposing, and covering large drums, barrels and tanks holding water.

Dr Bullock-DuCasse added that individuals should ensure that they protect themselves from mosquito bites by using insect repellent containing DEET, covering their body as much as possible by wearing long-sleeved clothing, for example, and putting mesh on doors and windows.

For more information, persons may contact the ministry's Emergency Operations Centre at 1-888-663-5683 or 1-888-ONE-LOVE.

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