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Vector Control Unit hosts exhibition

Vector Control Unit hosts exhibition


Small bites can cause big threats, warns the country’s Vector Control Unit; but it is also pointing to many preventative measures that can be taken to avoid vector-borne diseases.{{more}}

In celebration of World Health Day, the Vector Control Unit hosted an exhibition yesterday, under the National Post Office, to educate the public on vector-borne diseases, their causes and how they can be prevented.

Vector-borne diseases are those that can be spread by mosquitoes, fleas and rodents, such as dengue fever, chikungunya fever, rat bite fever and leptospirosis.

In an interview with SEARCHLIGHT, an officer from the Vector Control Unit, Justin Soleyn, explained some preventative measures that can be taken to avoid catching a vector-borne disease.

The officer noted that it is important to avoid having breeding grounds readily available for these vectors, as they carry the diseases.

“When you have tyres in your yard, we encourage persons to bore holes or fill them with sand. When you throw down tyres and leave them like that, it harbours a lot of mosquitoes. Rodents at home; if they bite your food and you eat it, you can get rat bite fever. It can be cured, but only if you catch it at an early stage,” Soleyn explained.

“We advise persons to change the water in vases two to three times per week. A lot of persons keep water drums around their yard. We advise that they keep these drums covered. Put something tight around the rim so that mosquitoes cannot get inside. Also, when you clean the drums, scrub around the rims; scrub it properly, because mosquitoes lay the eggs and the eggs can be in that dry drum for at least a year.”

The officer also noted that persons should ensure that their septic tanks are properly sealed and that they cover the top of their vent pipes with mesh, so that if mosquitoes are in their septic tanks, they will not be able to come out and eventually, they will die.

Under the theme “Small bites, big threats,” these preventative measures served as part of yesterday’s display. Examples of where mosquitoes breed, the life cycle of a mosquito and types of diseases carried by vectors were also on display.