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Number of chikungunya cases declining in SVG

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The number of reported chikungunya cases here in St Vincent and the Grenadines has been declining, with a significant decrease in the number of cases on Bequia, one of the hardest hit areas.{{more}}

The Ministry of Health, Wellness and the Environment, in a release, said the decrease is as a consequence of a range of factors, such as continuous health promotion exercises and an intensive vector control programme, including inspection of properties, source reduction and increased fogging activities.

Chikungunya is a viral disease transmitted to humans by infected aedes aegypti mosquitoes. It causes fever and severe joint pain. Other symptoms include muscle pain, headache, nausea, fatigue and rash.

The virus was first reported in St Vincent and the Grenadines in April of this year and since then there have been close to two thousand cases reported island wide.

The Ministry of Health, Wellness and the Environment said it will continue to intensify health promotion and vector control activities in order to eliminate this disease from St Vincent and the Grenadines.

The Ministry of Health, Wellness and the Environment urges all Vincentians to play an active part in this elimination exercise. Persons are encouraged to keep water drums and tanks covered, to rid their premises of unused tires, keep the general surroundings clean, use appropriate clothing to avoid mosquito bites, and also insect repellents and bed nets where necessary.

The Ministry, therefore, advises everyone to avoid letting their guard down, as favourable conditions which harbour mosquitoes can lead to an increased propagation of mosquitoes and a possible upsurge in the disease.