Mosquito attack continues in face of fifth local case
(CNS): After a fifth case of locally transmitted dengue fever in West Bay, the MRCU is pressing ahead with its additional ground and air operations despite the weather. In an effort to keep the numbers of the Aedes aegypti, the mosquito that carries the disease, under control, the unit will be carrying out early evening aerial missions on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, instead of Tuesdays and Thursdays as originally scheduled. However, the mozzie experts are asking people to follow the guidelines to eliminate breeding grounds around their homes and to prevent bites. In the most recent outbreak of the disease, of the eight cases that have been confirmed three were imported and five transmitted in Cayman.
The department said this week that it is waiting on results for a further 20 cases and officials say there may be further local cases confirmed as a result of the recent rain and the increase in standing water where the Aedes aegypti breeds.
Although dengue can be severe, even fatal, none of the local patients have been critically ill and most have now recovered. Dengue fever is not passed from person to person. For transmission to occur the Aedes mosquito must bite the sick patient in the first week of symptoms, after which he becomes non-infectious, and then must survive for a further 8-10 days in order to transmit the disease. Those insects destroyed during this period are unable to pass on the disease.
The public are advised that the insecticides which MRCU uses are safe and approved by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in the United States.
Aedes aegypti lives and breeds in and around houses. To avoid their homes becoming breeding grounds, members of the public should drain water from coolers, tanks, barrels, drums and buckets, remove objects in the yard which have collected water and keep water containers covered.
While most mosquitoes bite at dawn or dusk, this mosquito also bites in the day so the Public Health Department advises people to wear long sleeves, long trousers and mosquito repellent as a precaution against bites.
Any questions or queries should be directed to MRCU on 949-2557 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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