(CMR) The Public Health Department, Customs and Border Control (CBC), and the Mosquito Research and Control Unit (MRCU) said there has been no outbreak of dengue in Cayman Brac, nor has there been any community transmission of the disease on any of the three islands to date this year.
This statement comes in response to questions from the community relating to the emergence of dengue in Cayman Brac.
They confirmed that an individual test positive for the illness and is receiving the appropriate care. The Public Health Department has ascertained that the individual contracted the virus before arriving in the Cayman Islands.
“Dengue is spread through the bite of an infected Aedes species mosquito, Aedes aegypti and Aedes Albopictus. The Dengue virus cannot be spread directly from person to person,” explains Dr. Eryka Simmons, Acting Medical Officer of Health.
However, a person infected with dengue fever can infect other mosquitoes, which is why the MRCU is actively monitoring the situation and taking the necessary steps to minimize the possibility of community transmission.
“Earlier this year, the MRCU increased our operations in the Sister Islands so as to cover more ground more often,” explained Acting Director Mr. John Smith.
“We are working closely with the Public Health Department and other relevant agencies to do our part in mitigating the risk posed by the mosquito population. This has meant a multi-faceted response that includes the use of Adulticid Spraying, Thermo Fogging, and utilizing barrier treatments in key locations throughout Cayman Brac,” he added.
Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Nick Gent said there is no cause for concern.
“There is no cause for concern. We are monitoring the incident and will keep everyone abreast of the situation. The prevention of any and all mosquito-borne illnesses is an important public health objective. Everyone can play their part in reducing their risk from mosquito-borne illnesses,” he said.
Critical steps in the prevention of dengue and other mosquito-borne illnesses include:
-Using mosquito bite repellent containing at least 50% DEET
-Wearing long-sleeved shirts and long pants when possible, and certainly during peak hours
-Remove standing water sources such as tires, buckets, and other containers around the home and places of business where mosquitoes could lay eggs
-Use screens where possible
-Kill mosquitos inside your home
-Report potential breeding sites to the Mosquito Research and Control Unit (MRCU)
The MRCU’s Service Request Form allows residents to report potential breeding sites, as well as request a property inspection, and report a mosquito-biting problem, among other things. For more information, log on to mrcu.ky or 949-2557.