In the days leading up to the start of the new school year on 5 September, health inspectors and vector control personnel will undertake a comprehensive inspection and fogging of primary and secondary schools on the island.
The initiative which will be led by the Ministry of Health’s Vector Control Division, is aimed at identifying and destroying all mosquito breeding sources and to kill adult mosquitoes that can spread dangerous mosquito-borne viruses.
Senior Environmental Health Officer — Kenny James on Thursday told the Government Information Service, that the island-wide operation will commence on 28 August, in the parish of St David.
“What we intend to do is to deploy our teams of vector control personnel at the different schools compound and surrounding areas to carry out the inspection during the day… Then we will return later in the evening (about 6 pm) to carryout the fogging component,” James explained.
The success of the operation he said will be based on the co-operation of the principals, managers and caretakers of the schools and access to the respective facilities.
“So we are depending on them (principals, managers and caretakers) to make the schools available by opening up the gates, doors and windows of classrooms and offices as well as toilets so that the exercise can run smoothly and successfully so that the teachers, students, and everyone can reap the health benefits.”
With the Ministry’s Epidemiology Unit recording some 72 laboratory confirmed cases of Zika infections in Epi-week#33, plus 6 Zika-related GBS (Guillain-Barré Syndrome) diagnosed cases, this latest initiative is another key intervention strategy of Government’s ongoing efforts to curb and prevent widespread Zika outbreak in the country.
Below is the schedule that will guide the operation.
- Monday, 29 August: St David.
- Tuesday, 30 August: St Andrew
- Wednesday, 31 August: St Patrick
- Thursday, 1 September: St Mark/St John
- Friday, 2 September: St George.
Health officials say a similar program will be executed on the sister-isles.