The number of suspected Dengue cases in Antigua and Barbuda between April 2018 and January 2019 now stands at 21, of which six have been confirmed by the Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA).
According to a statement from the Ministry of Health and the Environment, CARPHA has also confirmed, through laboratory testing, the presence of Dengue type 3 in the country.
Dengue is a viral disease spread by the Aedes aegypti mosquito. The symptoms include fever, headache, rash and vomiting; which could lead to dehydration, muscle pain, dark coloured stool, bleeding from the nose and mouth, and an inability to adapt to bright lights.
Parents are being urged to pay keen attention to babies who may become so dehydrated that they cry without producing tears, and use fewer diapers as a result of less frequent urination.
The ministry said that any person who believes he or she may be infected should NOT use Aspirin, Ibuprofen or Advil – or any other non-steroidal, anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDS) – but instead use other fever- reducing agents such as Paracetamol, Panadol and Cetamol.
Reducing the number of Dengue cases requires reducing the number of mosquitoes, which is why the Vector Control Unit at the Central Board of Health (CBH) has intensified its mosquito reduction activities through increased inspections to identify and destroy mosquito-breeding sites.
They have also increased fogging operations to kill the adult mosquito.
There is a weekly fogging schedule that details when fogging will be carried out in the various communities.