The Ministry of Health and Social Security continues to actively respond to the outbreak of the Zika virus in the region. Whereas to date, 21 countries have been affected by the virus, including some neighboring territories, Grenada remains free from the virus.
The Ministry also notes with great concern the number of credible regional and international reports suggesting a strong link between Zika infection in pregnant women and unfavourable pregnancy outcomes, such as stillbirths and birth defects, notably microcephaly – (abnormal smallness of the head, a congenital condition associated with incomplete brain development).
The Ministry of Health advises that in keeping with the guidelines from the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO), women who are pregnant should take every possible measure to protect themselves from being bitten by the Aedes Aegytpi mosquito, which can carry the Zika virus.
Women who are planning to get pregnant should seek information from their health care providers on the risk associated with the Zika virus and pregnancy outcomes, before doing so.
The Ministry also noted reports of muscle weakness and paralysis occurring in some people, several days after becoming infected with Zika.
The Zika outbreak can be abated, but this requires the full and sustained cooperation of every citizen, who must actively search for, and destroy mosquito breeding-sites inside and around their homes.
The Ministry of Health continues to take the lead in educating the public on the Zika virus, and utilize various effective control measures to reduce breeding sites altogether, throughout the entire tri-island.