St Vincent and the Grenadines, one dengue case for the year
While there is widespread concern about an increase in dengue fever cases in some Caribbean countries, St Vincent and the Grenadines has luckily recorded only one confirmed case for 2019.
Despite the statistic being favorable, the Ministry of Health, Wellness and the Environment is encouraging Vincentians to be aware of the symptoms of dengue fever and to seek medical treatment immediately if any is experienced.
Dengue Fever is a flu-like illness that affects infants, young children and adults.
It is spread by the bite of the Aedes aegypti mosquito and symptoms usually start between four and ten days after infection.
Signs and symptoms of a Dengue virus infection include:
• high fever
• headache (pain behind the eyes)
• muscle and joint pains
• skin rash (red rash)
The Ministry notes persistent fever, persistent vomiting, and persistent abdominal pain, or bleeding, are warning signs which suggest that dengue fever disease is taking a more severe course. Persons experiencing these symptoms should seek medical attention immediately.
In August 2019, the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) had warned that the Latin America and Caribbean region was experiencing a new epidemic cycle of the dengue disease after two years of low incidence.
PAHO had stated that the 10 countries most affected by dengue, in terms of new cases per 100,000 inhabitants, were Nicaragua, Brazil, Honduras, Belize, Colombia, El Salvador, Paraguay, Guatemala, Mexico and Venezuela.