July 23, 2021

Caribbean teamwork for chikungunya suggested

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health-disease-dengue-chikungunya-europe-france-376355From The Daily Herald

THE HAGUE–The Permanent Committee for Kingdom Relations of the Second Chamber of the Dutch Parliament would like to see a broad, regional consultation in the Caribbean to combat chikungunya.

The Committee submitted a number of questions to Minister of Home Affairs and Kingdom Relations Ronald Plasterk earlier this week in an effort to get more clarity on the developments regarding the spreading and consequences of chikungunya and the efforts to halt this viral disease.

Member of the Second Chamber Roelof van Laar of the Labour Party PvdA had already sought clarity from the minister on this matter late last year. He wanted to know what the Dutch Government was doing to help tackle the chikungunya epidemic on the islands and subsequently requested a so-called written consultation following the minister’s letter on January 14 this year.

In that letter, Plasterk stated that the chikungunya epidemic in the Dutch Caribbean, which has passed its peak point, is expected to periodically return to the region in the coming years, probably in a smaller format. He explained that there was no medical treatment for chikungunya, other than relieving the symptoms and treating the possible complications, and that it concerned a difficult and long-existing problem.

Members of the Kingdom Relations Committee asked why it was difficult to combat the yellow fewer mosquito (Aedes aegypti) and the tiger mosquito (Aedes albopictus) that spread chikungunya, and why it was so hard to do this on a long term.

The committee wanted to know which methods were being used in the combating of chikungunya, how much money had been invested so far, how many persons were infected by the disease per island, and whether these persons suffered severe symptoms and/or long lasting after-effects.

The committee was further interested in knowing whether there were consultations between the countries in the Caribbean to tackle the tiger and yellow fever mosquitoes from a regional point of view. “Would a regional approach be more effective than dealing with this per island? What is needed for an effective regional approach?”

What role does the World Health Organisation (WHO) play in the research to effectively combat chikungunya, and is research being done to create a vaccination or medication the committee asked.

Clarity was also sought on reports that the Netherlands Technology Institute TNO had developed a way to prevent the breeding of mosquitoes by making the insects sterile, but that this agent was only available on a small scale, for citizens. “Does government see possibilities to disburse these products more rapidly and on a larger scale?”

For more on this story go to: http://thedailyherald.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=53475:caribbean-teamwork-for-chikungunya-suggested&catid=1:islands-news&Itemid=54

Image: www.medindia.net

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