Medical Officer of Health for St. James, Dr. Marcia Johnson-Campbell, is encouraging persons to be aware of the symptoms of dengue fever and seek medical treatment immediately if any is experienced.
“If persons have persistent fever, persistent vomiting, and persistent abdominal pain, or if there is any bleeding, [these are] the warning signs suggesting that the disease is taking a more severe course. We want these persons to come in [to health facilities] and seek medical care promptly,” Dr. Johnson-Campbell pointed out.
She was speaking at a Jamaica Information Service (JIS) Think Tank at the JIS Regional Office in Montego Bay, St. James, on last Friday (Sept. 27).
Dr. Johnson-Campbell advised that staff at public health institutions across St. James have been working diligently to facilitate persons with suspected cases of dengue fever.
“Whether they come to the Cornwall Regional Hospital or to our health centres, we have sought to increase staffing to accommodate persons who need to be seen,” she informed.
In relation to vector control, the Medical Officer indicated that the St. James Public Health Department continues to carry out activities across the parish to rid communities of mosquito breeding sites.
“Our team is out there doing the best they can to do the fogging, destroy breeding sites and educate persons on how to make themselves safe,” she further said.
Dr. Johnson-Campbell also emphasised the need for citizens to play their part in the search and destruction of breeding sites in and around their homes, workplaces and schools and, in the process, protect themselves.
“We encourage persons to use mosquito repellants and mosquito nets to protect themselves from [mosquitos],” she stated.
Persons are also advised to discard items that can accumulate water, such as old drums, used tyres, and plastic containers; wear long-sleeved shirts and pants outdoors; and regularly change water in animal and pet containers.
The Aedes Aegypti mosquito is responsible for the spread of dengue fever, Zika and chikungunya viruses.