July 29, 2021

Two new zika cases confirmed in USVI – no reported cases in Cayman Islands

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Screen Shot 2016-04-27 at 12.58.59 PMNo Zika cases reported in Cayman Islands

Zika Virus Update as of 25 April 2016 From Cayman Islands Public Health Department

The Acting Medical Officer of Health, Dr. Samuel Williams Rodriguez, wishes to advise that as of Monday, 25 April 2016 there are no reported or confirmed cases of Zika virus in the Cayman Islands.

There are forty two (42) countries worldwide that have been experiencing a first outbreak of the Zika virus since 2015, with no previous evidence of circulation, and with ongoing transmission by mosquitoes. Seventeen (17) countries have reported evidence of Zika virus transmission prior to 2015, with or without ongoing transmission, or have reported an outbreak since 2015 that is now over.

The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) is also reporting that after careful review of existing evidence, the Zika virus is a cause of microcephaly and other severe fetal brain defects.

Pregnant women continue to be cautioned when travelling to countries where there is an established and ongoing outbreak of the Zika virus.

Eight countries have now reported evidence of sexual transmission (person-to-person) of the Zika virus, other than mosquito-borne transmission: Argentina, Chile, France, Italy, New Zealand, Peru, Portugal and the United States. Peru and Portugal are the latest countries to report person-to-person transmission.

In all cases, the males travelled to countries with active Zika virus transmission. Where sufficient information was provided related to unprotected sexual intercourse before, during, or shortly after cessation of the males’ symptoms, sexual partners did not visit a country with known active Zika virus transmission.

No cases of transmission from women infected with Zika virus to their sexual partners have been reported to date. From individual case reports, Zika virus RNA has been detected up to 62 days after onset of symptoms in semen.

It is, however, not currently known if sexual transmission can occur from asymptomatic males to their sex partners.

While there are no confirmed cases of the Zika virus in the Cayman Islands, Dr. Samuel Williams-Rodriguez is using this opportunity to remind the public that the dengue fever and chikungunya viruses are still circulating within the Caribbean region. The Cayman Islands is reporting its first imported case of dengue for 2016.

“As at 21 April 2016, the Public Health Department is confirming one case of imported dengue after a resident returned to Cayman following a visit to a dengue endemic country. As we have the Aedes aegypti mosquito in the Cayman Islands, which is the vector involved in the spread of dengue fever, for example, we do have potential for transmission if a returning resident or a visitor has the dengue virus,” he said.

Since January 2016, 27 patients have been tested for Zika, chikungunya and/or dengue. The total number of tests performed is 60. There is one result pending.

“While we are still thankful that we do not as yet have any cases of Zika in the Cayman Islands, we must remain vigilant. As there is no vaccine against the Zika virus (or for dengue or chikungunya), this highlights the importance of controlling the carrier mosquito. We continue to encourage the general public to remove any containers from their yards which can hold water, such as buckets, plant pots and discarded tyres, as these are the favoured breeding sites for this mosquito,” said Dr. Bill Petrie, Director of the Mosquito Research and Control Unit (MRCU).

For further information contact the Public Health Department on 244-2621 or the MRCU on 949-2557.

49 countries reporting active Zika transmission in the last nine months.
As of 22 April 2016, areas with active Zika virus transmission are:

Screen Shot 2016-04-27 at 3.39.28 PM

Two new zika cases confirmed in USVI

zika_kit_w_captionsFrom Caribbean News Now

ST THOMAS, USVI — The US Virgin Islands Department of Health on Tuesday confirmed one additional case of the zika virus on St Croix and one in St Thomas. The total confirmed zika cases is now 16; 14 of which are on St Croix and two on St. Thomas.

“Today’s report shows that we must continue to protect ourselves from mosquito-borne illnesses,” Commissioner Nominee, Dr Michelle Davis stated in response to the updated report. “With Carnival, Jump Up, Ironman-Triathalon, and so many other outdoor events this week, it is important to wear repellent and protective clothing.”

This advice is especially true for pregnant women, as zika can be passed to her unborn baby and can cause serious birth defects in babies of women who had zika virus while pregnant.

“The Department of Health offers free testing and services for pregnant women to prevent zika infection and prevent mosquitoes from living in their homes,” explained Deputy Commissioner Kimberly Jones.

The Department of Health will also inspect the homes of pregnant women for mosquitoes and mosquito larvae and provide treatment, as needed in the homes of those pregnant women who receive testing.

Pregnant women are also eligible to receive a free zika prevention kit from 14 healthcare clinics across the US Virgin Islands. The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recently delivered 750 kits to St Croix, St John, and St Thomas. Each kit includes educational materials in English and Spanish, EPA-registered insect repellent, permethrin spray repellent for treating clothing, condoms to avoid sexual transmission of zika, treatment tabs for preventing mosquitoes from breeding in standing water, and a bed net.

Zika is spread to people primarily through the bite of an infected Aedes species mosquito. The most common symptoms of zika are fever, rash, joint pain, and conjunctivitis (red eyes). The illness is usually mild with symptoms lasting for several days to a week after being bitten by an infected mosquito. People usually don’t get sick enough to go to the hospital, and they very rarely die of zika. For this reason, many people might not realize they have been infected.

People can take the following steps to prevent getting Zika: wear long-sleeved shirts and long pants, stay in places with air conditioning and window and door screens to keep mosquitoes outside, use Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)-registered insect repellents with one of the following active ingredients: DEET, picaridin, IR3535, oil of lemon eucalyptus, or para-menthane-diol.

IMAGE: zika_kit_w_captions.jpg The free zika prevention kit available in the US Virgin Islands

For more on this story go to: http://www.caribbeannewsnow.com/topstory-Two-new-zika-cases-confirmed-in-USVI-30185.html

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