Imported case of dengue reported in Cayman

Zika is spread by the Aedes aegypti mosquito.

The Cayman Islands Public Health Department has reported a single imported case of dengue fever.

The Aedes aegypty mosquito
The Aedes aegypty mosquito

Acting Medical Officer of Health Dr. Samuel Williams-Rodriguez confirmed in a press release this week that a Cayman Islands resident had returned from a “dengue endemic country” with the virus. He did not specific which country.

“As we have the Aedes aegypti mosquito in the Cayman Islands, which is the vector involved in the spread of dengue fever, for example, we do have potential for transmission if a returning resident or a visitor has the dengue virus,” Dr. Williams-Rodriguez said.

He said that since January 2016, 27 patients in Cayman had been tested for Zika, chikungunya and/or dengue. The total number of tests performed is 60. There is one result pending.

Bill Petrie, director of the Mosquito Research and Control Unit, said, “While we are still thankful that we do not as yet have any cases of Zika in the Cayman Islands, we must remain vigilant. As there is no vaccine against the Zika virus (or for dengue or chikungunya), this highlights the importance of controlling the carrier mosquito.

We continue to encourage the general public to remove any containers from their yards which can hold water, such as buckets, plant pots and discarded tires, as these are the favoured breeding sites for this mosquito.”

For further information, contact the Public Health Department on 244-2621 or the MRCU on 949-2557.

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