Patient catches chikungunya in Cayman capital

| 05/11/2014

(CNS): As the total number of confirmed chikungunya cases in the Cayman Islands climbs to 30, public health officials confirmed that a sixth local transmission has now occurred in a patient in George Town. Five results were received by the hospital this week from blood samples sent to the Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA) in Trinidad. Just one was positive but it was also confirmed as a local transmission. There are a further 25 pending cases awaiting confirmation but with the ongoing an outbreak of the virus in Jamaica, Cayman is battling to contain the virus.

“The Public Health Department in collaboration with other agencies, such as MRCU, continue surveillance effortsfor the identification of locally acquired cases. With only one positive case of local transmission since the week beginning 27 October to date, the containment measures are proving to be effective so far," said Dr Samuel Williams, Acting Medical Officer of Health.

So far in Cayman, 11 people living in George Town, four from Cayman Brac, seven in West Bay, five in Bodden Town, two people in Little Cayman and one in North Side have contracted the virus. With six people picking up the virus here via mosquito transmission, the rest acquired chikungunya overseas. Public Health said two contracted the virus in the Dominican Republic, three in Guyana, one in St Lucia, while 18 people have now got the sickness in Jamaica.

Chikungunya causes fever, severe joint pain, muscle pain, headache, nausea, fatigue and rash. Officials urge anyone who may be experiencing these symptoms to immediately see a healthcare provider. They also remind the public to use mosquito repellent with DEET on the skin, and wear long sleeve shirts and pants when outside during times that mosquitoes bite, whether in the Cayman Islands or on travels.

As of 31 October 17,456 probable cases of chikungunya have been reported from 34 countries in the region. Further information can be obtained through www.hsa.ky. Regional updates can be accessed by visiting the CARPHA website on http://carpha.org/What-We-Do/Public-Health-Activities/Chikungunya.  In addition United States updates are available from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on http://www.cdc.gov/chikungunya/geo/united-states.html

Category: Health

Comments (14)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    More fear porn.

  2. No See Um says:

    Mosquitos are really bad after the last rains. Haven't seen or heard the MRCU crop duster in a long time. Is it out of action? Been frightened by the bird cannon?

  3. WHAT !!!!!! says:

    People can HELP themselves too by keeping ALL things that catch water turned down …I have been around many homes and see water in buckets and the lil creatures in there my neighbor had four or five drums and I took liberty and turned it all up as the drums were infested with some kind of mosquito..MRCU doing a good job spraying and ground fogging my area but lets do our part and check out or own surroundings….My 2cents for the week…

  4. Anonymous says:

    I noticed the mosquito sprayers are out in full force and in my hood, they start spraying as early as 4:30 p.m.! The other day we had to rush to close the windows of our house because we could literally taste and smell the mosquito spray in the air. Seems to me the only choice  we have is to either get sick from the mosquitos or get sick from the stuff sprayed that is supposed to kill the mosquitos…………

  5. Anonyanmous says:

    The Cayman Islands have been relatively luck when it comes to diseases but we must remain ever so vigilante with the prolifiration of global travellers to and from Cayman.  We must now ensure that each visitor has proper, adequate and current health insurance prior to landing here as it's a requirement in Europe because if we have to safeguard against so much infections  and diseases then travellers here should have the proper health insurace to provide for their care in the event they become ill and we must treat them.  

  6. Anonymous says:

    Whilst I appreciate that there was a huge amount of rain beginning of last week, I have not seen planes or heard sprayers out for a long long time. How are we going to fight it if they are not out all the time right now?

    I went for a bike ride this morning, just after sunrise…got 5 bites. Same happened whilst walking the other day about 30 mins before sunset. And colleagues have just come back from Jamaica saying they got bitten to shreds. Maybe temporarily need to stop Jamaican travel? Sort out our problem and then go assist them sort out theirs?

  7. Slowpoke says:

    Now 6 and counting.  Still, not bad for 50,000 people living on an island, in close proximity to each other.

  8. Anonymous says:

    http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/new-type-of-more-problematic-mosquito-borne-illness-detected-in-brazil/

     

    And now the African strain of the virus has arrived in Brazil.  Only a matter of time before we have both….

     

    "The African strain has been accumulating mutations that allow it to be spread more easily by Aedes albopictus. That bug is common in the eastern U.S. and can survive colder temperatures. It also lays it eggs in a wider variety of settings, making it more difficult to exterminate…

     

     

  9. Anonymous says:

    I hope Friday night trick-or-treating doesn't yield a batch of new local transmissions.

  10. Anonyanmous says:

    This disease was imported to the country amidst all efforts to control it is still spreading.  The ariel spraying and fogging needs to continue island wide and greater attention must be paid when admitting people from the infected countries whether they are citizens, residents or visitors.

  11. Anonymous says:

    Why is it that the mosquito that transmitts this disease was eradicated from Cayman decades ago, has, until recent years, been eradicated whenever imported, can’t be eradicated again? What is the MRCU doing differently now that they can no longer eliminate this mosquito when it gets in to Cayman? Or has MRCU become another useless department? The director of MRCU has some “splainin” to do!

    • Anonymous says:

      No govt has some explaining to do, if I remember correctly, the MRCU budget was cut in the last budget which is probably why we're not seeing as much activity with spraying etc.

      The Dept of Health would have been better spending the $800,000+ that they spent on the ebola "tent", by raising awareness of Chikungunya and reducing mosquito breeding grounds.

    • Anonymous says:

      The moquitos have been eradicated more than once  You are located in their natural range.