This Saturday and Sunday, Grenadian health authorities will mark the importance of Caribbean Wellness Day with an island wide cleanup exercise. The issue of mosquito breeding, indiscriminate waste disposal and personal health and safety, with specific emphasis on mosquito borne diseases will be the focus of this year’s Caribbean Wellness Day by the Ministry of Health (MOH).
The decision was taken by the ministry to address the very high mosquito index in various parts of the country amidst growing concerns of Chikungunya and poor waste disposal practices by some persons. On Tuesday evening an unanimous decision was taken to stage this weekend’s cleanup and continue the exercise on 20-21 September.
“What we have agreed to do is to use this weekend, 13-14 September, to begin in a concerted way to clean properties owned, operated or managed by government,” explained Chief Medical Officer, Dr George Mitchell. “We will also use that opportunity to service some areas and institutions like schools and elderly nursing homes as we move along, and we’re hoping that the process will continue the following weekend likewise.”
During Tuesday’s meeting of environmental health, inspectors reported a direct link between improper waste disposal, old tires, white goods, poor management of usable and non-usable household water holding containers and mosquito breeding.
The increasing reports of suspected cases of Chikungunya throughout the country, has again prompted both government and nongovernmental health officials, as well as, members of the business community to call on Grenadians to clean up their surroundings and practice better and responsible waste disposal habits.
In February of this year the MOH staged a two-day island cleanup which did not see the full cooperation of the Grenadian public, but since the rapid outbreak of the “ChikV”, several persons have been calling on locals to change their bad waste disposal habits and clean up their surroundings, since Chikungunya can have very long lasting debilitating effects.
Some persons have also called for the ministry to enforce existing waste disposal laws to curb the problem.