The St. James Public Health Services has intensified its public education campaign to sensitise residents about the need to take personal responsibility in the fight against dengue.
Parish Health, Promotion and Education Officer, Julian Grandison Mullings, says a number of people have been turning up at health centres with symptoms of dengue, and urges individuals to take the necessary precaution against the vector-borne disease.
She noted that aggressive health promotion and vector-control teams have been targeting schools and faith-based institutions, conducting inspections and disseminating information on the importance of implementing good vector-control practices.
“Each person needs to get into their home and community setting and do inspections”— Julian Grandison Mullings , Parish Health, Promotion and Education Officer
“From a health promotions perspective, we target the students. So we will do their general devotions where we will educate them and ensure that they have printed material. We also seek to tap into the staff meetings where we educate the staff and PTAs (Parent-Teacher Associations). Treatment of this problem has to be holistic. It has to be everybody understanding that it is their responsibility and that they play a significant role and part,” she emphasised.
Additionally, the officer indicated that “we get colleagues to do sessions in their homes, churches and we are in partnerships with community groups such as the Community Development Committees”.
She implores residents to take all the necessary steps to help reduce the mosquito population in their communities.
“People say we need to do fogging and, yes, fogging is important; but the fogging only affects the adult mosquitoes. Therefore, it means that the other three stages that a mosquitoes goes through can only be controlled from an individual perspective. Each person needs to get into their home and community setting and do inspections,” Mrs. Mullings added.
Dengue is a mosquito-borne viral disease that is transmitted mainly by the female Aedes aegypti mosquito. This mosquito also transmits the chikungunya, yellow fever and Zika viruses.