|One Imported Case of Malaria Recorded in Jamaica Since 2013|
|Monday, 14 January 2013 07:13|
Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Michael Coombs is again indicating that there has been one (1) imported case of malaria since the start of 2013 and no locally transmitted case of the disease since 2009.
“The media reports of a second case of malaria in Mandeville this year are incorrect. The only case recorded so far for 2013 involves a patient who travelled to Nigeria and did not take the required health precautions for that country. The patient, who resides in St. Ann, has been treated and is recovering,” Dr. Coombs explained.
The CMO also indicated that there were five imported cases of malaria recorded in 2012. One (1) case was detected in March and involved a patient who resides in Kingston and St. Andrew, two (2) in August, which involved patients from St. Catherine and two (2) in December which involved a foreign national who was in-transit at the Norman Manley International Airport in Kingston and a patient who resides in Mandeville, Manchester.
The Manchester patient has been successfully treated for malaria but remains in hospital for other complications.
Dr. Coombs notes that for all cases, the Ministry has done fever surveillance and operations to detect and destroy breeding sites as well as search for any other infected persons. To date, no person has been identified with malaria in the vicinity of these infected persons.
The Ministry has also continued its routine vector control activities including fogging to control the population of the adult mosquito, search and destroy operations for breeding sites and public education.
“There are no vaccines to prevent malaria and therefore prevention with the use of a prophylaxis is recommended for persons travelling to malaria endemic countries. In order to keep Jamaica malaria free we are urging persons travelling to these countries to take the necessary precautions. Before travel, persons should check with the Ministry of Health or their Parish Health Department to find out what measures need to be taken for the country to which they plan to travel,” Dr. Coombs stated.
Importantly, he said, persons should take these medications strictly are directed.
Malaria is caused by the malaria parasite (not a virus) and is spread when the female Anopheles mosquito bites an infected person and then bites others. There is no direct person to person transmission. Symptoms include fever, chills, headache, muscle aches and fatigue. Nausea, vomiting and diarrhoea are also possible.
Contact: MOH, Public Relations Unit Tel: 967-1561
You can view this press release and other information on our website at www.moh.gov.jm