GT resident first to acquire local case of Zika

| 08/08/2016 | 52 Comments
Cayman News Service

Aedes aegypti mosquito

(CNS): The first local transmission of Zika in the Cayman Islands has been confirmed in a patient in George Town. Acting Medical Officer of Health Dr Samuel Williams-Rodriguez said the man reported the onset of symptoms on 25 July and he visited a private physician on 26 July. He was referred to Cayman Islands Hospital, where a sample was taken and sent to the Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA) for testing. With no travel history to any of the countries where there is an outbreak, officials said this suggests he acquired the virus locally.

The Public Health Department has also received confirmation on three more samples of suspected imported cases of Zika from CARPHA, bringing those cases to a total of seven.

“With the rapid and ongoing transmission of the Zika virus around the world, it is not an alarming fact that local transmission has reached our shores,” Dr William said. “However, now that it has, this is even more reason for each and every one to play their part in ensuring that the spread is highly contained.

“While our partners at the Mosquito Research and Control Unit (MRCU) continue to do an exemplary job using scientific and evidence based combat measures, simple tasks such as emptying water filled tyres or containers of standing water, and protecting one’s self from being bitten my mosquitoes both locally and during travels will help to keep both imported and locally acquired cases of Zika at a minimum when compared to the global and regional situation,” he added.

The patient became ill just a few days before the Mosquito Research and Control Unit began its controversial release of genetically modified Aedes aegypti mosquitos in the North West Point area of West Bay. The pilot programme is expected to continue throughout the rest of West Bay for several more weeks before the bio-engineered insects are released in George Town and the rest of the island over the coming months.

At the beginning of August 68 countries and territories had reported evidence of mosquito-borne Zika virus transmission. Currently, the main outbreak regions are in South and Central America, the Caribbean and Oceania.

The United States of America reported local mosquito-borne Zika virus transmission for the first time on 29 July in Miami Dade and later in Broward; Cuba reported two cases of locally acquired Zika in the city of Hoguin on 3 August, and Vietnam reported one case of locally acquired Zika virus in Phu Yen Province.

The World Health Organization has concluded that, overall, the global risk assessment has not changed. Zika virus continues to spread geographically to areas where competent vectors are present. Although a decline in cases of Zika infection has been reported in some countries, or in some parts of countries, vigilance needs to remain high. At this stage, based on the evidence available, there is no overall decline in the outbreak.

For more advice on mosquito control, contact MRCU on 949-2557 in Grand Cayman, or 948-2223 on Cayman Brac; and DEH on 949-6696 in Grand Cayman, or 948-2321 in Cayman Brac.

For further information on Zika, please contact the Public Health Department at 244-2648 or 244-2621.

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Category: Health, health and safety

Comments (52)

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  1. Laurel Smith says:

    At least we are being warned!

  2. Anonymous says:

    With the high rate of adultery, some with multiple partners, it will soon spread around the island including the Brac.

  3. Anonymous says:

    Was it sexually transmitted or transmitted by mosquito?

  4. ZIKA Free Fridays says:

    So… Are our Olympians back from Brazil?

  5. Anonymous says:

    First local case reported, a few days after the release of GM mosquitos on the island. What a coincidence.

    CNS Note: The patient presented with the virus a few days before not after the release.

    • Anonymous says:

      Please learn to read before you comment

      “The patient became ill just a few days before the Mosquito Research and Control Unit began its controversial release of genetically modified Aedes aegypti mosquitos in the North West Point area of West Bay.”

    • SSM345 says:

      **cue Unsolved Mysteries Theme song***

    • Anonymous says:

      Yes, it is a coincidence, although the person in question would have been infected before their release, but don’t let facts get in the way of your paranoia. After all with Trump and Brexit, your type are living a post-factual existence.

    • Anonymous says:

      as soon as I read the headline I wondered who would be the first fool to come out with that. Well done, you win!

    • Anonymous says:

      Read the article. He presented with symptoms days BEFORE the release of any mosquitoes

    • Anonymous says:

      “The patient became ill just a few days before the Mosquito Research and Control Unit began its controversial release of genetically modified Aedes aegypti mosquitos in the North West Point area of West Bay. “

    • Diogenes says:

      You do realise the article says quite clearly that the patient became ill BEFORE the release? And that people become symptomatic days after being infected? So you are either a troll, didn’t bother reading the article before jumping to a conclusion, or are deliberately trying to stoke the fires. Rather sad on any of those counts.

    • Anonymous says:

      Cayman is practically the last country in the region to report locally transmitted Zika, and none of the others have released GM mosquitoes, so what is your point?

    • Anonymous says:

      Did you even read the report. “The patient became ill just a few days before the Mosquito Research and Control Unit began its controversial release of genetically modified Aedes aegypti mosquitos in the North West Point area of West Bay”. So he must have contracted it several days before that.

  6. Anonymous says:

    I guess I had better stop having unprotected sex with mosquitoes.

  7. Anonymous says:

    Only 20 percent of people who get ZIka know it — meaning most people infected won’t develop any symptoms. So how many people in the CI are infected with the virus will never be known. For people who get sick, the illness is usually mild. For this reason, many people might not realize they have been infected.
    I wonder why there is no war on Lyme disease carrying ticks? In the United States black-legged ticks are rapidly expanding into new geographic regions of the country. Lyme disease and Zika virus come from animals and spread to humans. Both illnesses are currently on the rise in the U.S. and worldwide. Which one is more dangerous? Zika virus poses the largest threat to fetuses and pregnant women, but Lyme disease can actually develop into a chronic,life altering illness for those infected.
    So if you travel to the US or Canada, check Lyme disease maps and make sure you know early signs of Lyme disease.

  8. Benny Zitto says:

    Its pretty obvious how this is spread and how it came on to this island????? Yet we still believe in this PPM work permit addiction Mumbo Jumbo and Oxitec’s financial windfall which has absolutely nothing to do with protecting Cayman.Stop the spread of Zika by limiting the amount of work permits from these third world nations coming here.

    • Anonymous says:

      You are a genius!!! It’s might help the rest of the population if you don’t spread your seeds!!!

    • Anonymous says:

      I am not sure that a word exists to accurately describe the stupidity of your remark, except possibly “Trumpism” or “Neanderthol”, but that could be an insult to both.

  9. Anonymous says:

    This is punishment for our gay sins from the good lord. In jeebus name we say ayyyyyy me n.

  10. Anonymous says:

    Where in George Town?

  11. Anonymous says:

    Well I wonder what all those who were against GM mosquitoes will say now

    • Anonymous says:

      1. Why are there no inspections of people’s yards to ensure that people do not have containers available for the mosquitoes to breed in?

      2. Why has there not been increased spraying and redoubled efforts to eradicate mosquitoes?

      3. Why have known carriers of the Zica virus been allowed outside thereby risking transmission?

      4. Why have there been no health checks at the airport to prevent carriers from high risk areas from entering?

      5. Why have the public not been urged to use condoms when having sex with persons who have visited infected areas?

      6. Why have the cabins on aircraft and ships from affected areas not been sprayed?

      7. Why are mosquitoes infected by Wolbachia bacteria not been released?

      • Anonymous says:

        7.48, this is Cayman. Slow down. Not the next government but the one after that will deal with it. Jeez, must be a furrener.

      • ZIKA Free Fridays says:

        8. Why did we send our athletes and their groupies to ZIKA ground zero (Brazil)

        • Anonymous says:

          Well 1.55, where else were we going to send an Olympic squad during the Brazilian Olympics? Despite one or two big names not going, seems to still be an awful lot of athletes there and have not heard one complain yet

      • Anonymous says:

        1) There are, but they rely on the PR notices to ‘dump over your water’. However experience around the world has shown that people are too lazy to eradicate mosquitoes.
        2) There has been, but people are less accepting of nasty chemicals being sprayed in their house and around their yard these days. Also the mosquitoes are evolving resistance to those chemicals (faster than people are).
        3) Because there are more unknown carriers so quarantining a few people, after they become symptomatic and the lab results are back, is inefficient & ineffective.
        4) Because most people are asymptomatic, or mildly symptomatic, and we’d end up stopping every American tourist with a cold.
        5) You’ve got greater risks from unprotected sex than Zika. If in this day and age you still need to be told to wrap it up, well, you’re in the same category as the people in (1) needing to be reminded to dump it out. Plus transmission is still more likely by mosquito than sex so worrying about sex instead of the mosquitoes just shows our human predilections.
        6) Because the disease is in the people on those airplanes and ships, remember point 4. (And point 2. People in an aircraft cabin don’t like being black flagged these days.)
        7) Because Wolbachia has not yet been shown to be effective against Zika. (It might be. But it hasn’t been proven yet.) And explain to me how one set of Genetic Modification (Oxitec) is worse than the other (introducing alien strains of Wolbachia in to the mosquitoes which continue to go from person to person potentially spreading several different diseases, while we hope that the alien Wolbachia will affect the disease in a positive way – kill it – rather than say mutating it in the same way that people think the Oxitec genetic material will somehow mutate in the mosquitoes and infect people or something.)

  12. Anonymous says:

    There have been other cases that have been hushed away too. Let Oxitec release them across the whole damn island.

  13. Anonymous says:

    How does a person go about getting tested if they have some symptoms?

  14. Anonymous says:

    So where was the transmission? In Miami they have identified the blocks.

  15. Anonymous says:

    Yups

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