KINGSTON, Jamaica - The Ministry of Health is urging continued vigilance to reduce the breeding of mosquitoes as the threat of dengue fever continues.
Director, Emergency, Disaster Management and Special Services, Dr Marion Bullock DuCasse says that people should maintain activities to search for and destroy sites, especially around homes and schools.
Cases of dengue fever continue to decline since the peak in the week ending October 20 when there were 569 cases. Since then there has been a downward trend weekly in the number of cases seen.
Reported dengue cases were 266, 339, 334, 249,122 and 66 respectively for the weeks leading up to the week ending December 1, the Ministry said.
“We want persons to continue to be vigilant despite the trending down of the number of cases in recent times. Persons should continue to spend at least ten minutes per week to search for and destroy mosquito breeding sites. This is especially important as the aedes aegypti mosquito which transmits the virus is generally found in and around places where people inhabit such as homes, schools, businesses and places of worship,” said Bullock DuCasse.
From the start of the year up to the week ending December 8 the Ministry has recorded 5,052 clinically suspected cases of dengue fever with 708 being laboratory confirmed. There have been ten confirmed dengue-related deaths.
In destroying breeding sites people should look for anything in which water can settle and either cover it tightly, keep the area dry, clean it regularly, fill it with soil or sand, punch holes into it and recycle or properly dispose of it. If mesh is used to cover containers then the holes should be small enough so that mosquitoes cannot enter.