Two Chikungunya cases on the mainland have been traced to Petite Martinique. Health Minister Clarice Modeste said that two of the eight Chikungunya cases on the mainland were persons who recently visited Petite Martinique, one of the communities that is heavily affected by Chikungunya.
Grenada reported its first Chikungunya cases in June and they were all on the sister island of Carriacou. The minister disclosed on Tuesday that the figure now stands at 183, and 8 of the cases are in the parish of St Andrew. Other places affected are Hillsborough, L’Esterre and Windward in Carriacou.
Though the ministry continues its campaign encouraging persons to clean up surroundings so as to reduce and eliminate breeding grounds for mosquitoes, the main carrier of the Chikungunya virus, Minister Modeste said that she is not satisfied with the response.
“In terms of the cleaning there is improvement but not enough to satisfy the demand,” said Modeste, who is of the view that owners of abandoned vehicles seem not to care about the impact these vehicles can have on the mosquito population.
Chikungunya is characterised by an abrupt onset of fever frequently accompanied by joint pain. Other common signs and symptoms include muscle pain, headache, nausea, fatigue and rash. The joint pain is often very debilitating, but usually lasts for a few days or may be prolonged to weeks.
The minister noted that persons who suspect they may be infected by the Chikungunya virus should visit a doctor to confirm their suspicions, because it will provide them with the correct treatment and provide the ministry with the correct data.
“There are cases that appear to be Chikungunya, but tests prove they are not, because there are other viruses which mimic the Chikungunya virus,” she said.
By Linda Straker