Jamaica Heightens Influenza A Virus Watch Following Outbreak In Trinidad

Jamaica has heightened its surveillance of the influenza A (H1N1) virus in light of the current outbreak in Trinidad and Tobago.

The Ministry of Health in says it’s monitoring the situation and is urging Jamaicans to take precautions.

Chief Medical Officer, Dr Marion Bullock DuCasse, notes that Jamaica is currently in its flu season and therefore persons should be extra careful to try to avoid becoming infected and transferring infection to others.

Jamaica has heightened its surveillance of the influenza A (H1N1) virus in light of the current outbreak in .

Dr Bullock DuCasse is encouraging individuals to observe good hygiene practices, such washing hands frequently with soap and water; covering the mouth when sneezing or coughing; to avoid contact with persons with flu-like symptoms and to avoid intimate contact including hand shaking and kissing.

Trinidad & Tobago’s Ministry of Health confirms that Stacy, whose real name is Anastasia Ramkissoon, died of H1N1. This is the fourth death attributed to the H1N1 influenza virus for the year to date in the country. 

Stacy Ramkissoon died because of H1N1

Ramkisson, 28, died at the Eric Williams Medical Sciences Complex, Mount Hope, on Saturday night (December ) after being confirmed as having the H1N1 virus. That was more than two weeks after being admitted to the hospital for pains related to her pregnancy.

Her baby died a day after she gave birth.

The post-mortem examination determined her cause of death to be viral associated pneumonia.

Her death came less than 24 hours after Health Minister Terrance Deyalsingh Friday confirmed that three people had died and there were 29 confirmed laboratory cases of the virus. 

Deyalsingh said that the authorities had ordered 20,000 does of the vaccine from the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) in the wake of the epidemic.

In a new release, the Ministry of Health of T&T reminded citizens that influenza could cause severe illness in some people, including the elderly, infants, young children and pregnant women as well as those with chronic medical conditions, such as heart, lung, kidney disease and diabetes. 

It said safe and effective vaccines that could prevent influenza or reduce the severity of illness were available at local health centres. 

Taking Measures To Deal With H1N1 Outbreak In Trinidad

Grenada says it will implement “all necessary measures that are legal” as it puts its disease surveillance system on alert in light of confirmed deaths related to the H1N1 virus or Swine Flu in Trinidad and Tobago.

“Our choice at this time is the best choice that is to implement all necessary measures that are legal and in keeping with international conventions and protocols such as the International Health Regulations (IHR) to protect our citizens as best as we can,” said Chief Medical Officer Dr George Mitchell of Grenada.

Dr Mitchell has briefed Health Minister Nickolas Steele and senior officials of the Ministry of Health on the latest H1N1 Report, adding that the Ministry of Health has no choice, but to keep its response and surveillance systems heightened so as to protect Grenadian citizens.

The Ministry of Health said it is urging all citizens to take all necessary measures including cough etiquette, regular hand-washing, and monitor conditions of relatives and friends should they come display symptoms associated with the H1N1 virus.

H1N1 is a respiratory illness that is caused by the Influenza A virus.

Symptoms include fever greater than 100 degrees Fahrenheit, sore throat, a cough, stuffy nose, headache and body aches and fatigue.

Nausea, vomiting and diarrhea may also be experienced.

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