PRO/AH/EDR> Dengue/DHF update (12): Americas (Jamaica, Barbados)


A ProMED-mail post
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International Society for Infectious Diseases

[1] Jamaica
Date: Sat 23 Sep 2023
Source: Fox News [edited]

Health officials in Jamaica have declared an outbreak of the dengue
fever Saturday [23 Sep 2023] with at least 565 suspected, presumed and
confirmed cases in the Caribbean nation.

Jamaica’s Ministry of Health and Wellness says the outbreak comes as
its National Surveillance Unit “advised that Jamaica has surpassed the
dengue epidemic threshold for July and August [2023] and is on a
trajectory to do the same for the month of September [2023].”

“The dominant strain is Dengue Type 2, which last predominated in
2010,” it said. “There are no dengue-related deaths classified at this
time, however, 6 deaths are being investigated.”

Health officials say there currently are at least 78 confirmed cases
of the mosquito-borne disease in Jamaica.

“Meanwhile, approximately 500 temporary vector control workers have
been engaged and deployed across the island to high-risk communities
along with 213 permanent workers,” the Ministry of Health and Wellness
also said.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says dengue
viruses are “spread to people through the bite of an infected Aedes
species mosquito.”

About 1 in 4 people infected will get sick, with mild symptoms
including nausea, vomiting, rash, aches and pains, according to the

Recovery takes about a week.

Around 1 in 20 people infected will develop severe dengue, which the
CDC says “can result in shock, internal bleeding, and even death.”

“The Ministry and Regional Health Authorities have made the necessary
preparations for a possible outbreak,” said Christopher Tufton, the
Minister of Health in Jamaica.

The Ministry is warning the public in Jamaica that the Aedes aegypti
mosquito “breeds in any containerized environment” that can hold
water, such as drums, tires, buckets and animal feeding containers.

“Persons are urged to play their part in ensuring that the cases are
minimized by monitoring water storage containers for mosquito
breeding, keeping surroundings free of debris, destroying or treating
potential mosquito breeding sites, wearing protective clothing, using
mosquito repellent and, as much as possible, staying indoors at dusk
with windows and doors closed,” it also said.

[Byline: Greg Norman]

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