Over 200 suspected zika cases in St Kitts-Nevis, says chief medical officer

By Toni Frederick
There are over 200 suspected cases of the zika virus in St Kitts and Nevis, says the newly appointed acting chief medical officer Dr Hazel Laws. “To date we have approximately 218 suspected cases of zika virus, based on their presentation with the symptoms. Low grade fever, rash, conjunctivitis… joint ad muscle pain, so based on their symptomology we have approximately 218 suspected cases,” Laws revealed on Wednesday, speaking on local radio.

“In order for a case to be confirmed, that individual would have gotten a test, a blood or a urine test and then the sample sent off to the lab and then it’s tested, and… if it’s positive, it would be laboratory confirmed. So a case is confirmed through laboratory testing,” she explained.

Meanwhile, deputy chief environmental health officer Jermaine Lake said it was inevitable that the zika virus would surface in St Kitts and Nevis.

“Every other country around us had reported cases, but… we couldn’t report cases unless we had persons showing up with the symptoms and then we get the blood samples and send to CARPHA… so we were in a state where we suspect that it’s here, but we can’t report to GIS that we have it. That would… irresponsible,” Lake said on Wednesday.

The department of environmental health is focusing on public education and the elimination and reduction of mosquito breeding sites, but will be implementing a fogging schedule in the coming days.

“Hopefully in a matter of days you should be hearing about our fogging schedule,” chief environmental health officer Alex Riley told listeners. (Caribbean News Now)

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