St Lucia has recorded its first casualty to the mosquito-borne dengue fever, two months after declaring an outbreak of the disease.
According to the Ministry of Health, the victim is an adult male, who was hospitalised after presenting with signs and symptoms of Severe Dengue Infection. To date, the island has recorded a total of 540 confirmed cases of dengue fever.
“Although cases have been identified throughout the island, most of the confirmed cases are concentrated in the northern region in areas such as Castries, Gros Islet and Central Babonneau,” said National Epidemiologist, Dr Michelle Francois.
“The ages of confirmed cases range from 3 weeks to 84 years, with the age group 5-14 years accounting for approximately 39 per cent of cases.”
Dengue fever is a viral illness spread by the bite of the species Aedes aegypti mosquito and, to a lesser extent, the Aedes Albopictus mosquito.
It is endemic to Saint Lucia, meaning that there is continued local transmission which often peaks during and after rainy seasons.