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Poslaťod god7manu55 » 19 Máj 2017 19:18

Intensified health surveillance, engaged by the Ministry of Health some weeks ago, continues across the country, even as the flooding situation resulting from increased rainfall takes its toll in varying forms on residents of flood-affected communities.And although Health Minister Dr Leslie Ramsammy, up to two days ago, reported that there is stability as it relates to the incidence of flood-related illnesses, daily health surveillance has been sustained.According to a senior health official yesterday, several health teams are still dispatched in the areas most susceptible to flood-related illnesses, a feature which will continue once the rainy weather persists.The flood-affected communities are found mainly in Regions Three, including the West Coast of Demerara and the East Bank of Essequibo; Region Four, including the East Bank and East Coast of Demerara and Georgetown; and Regions Five and Six.Since the commencement of the rainy weather, the Health Ministry said, about 51 per cent of those treated had suffered from Acute Respiratory Infections (ARI), about 33 per cent were treated for skin conditions such as rash and itch, while about three per cent have been treated for vomiting and diarrhoea.However, the Ministry of Health has been closely monitoring suspected cases of leptospirosis. Health Minister Dr Ramsammy had disclosed a few weeks ago that the ministry was monitoring five patients suspected to have contracted the disease, and that one has since died.But, according to reports reaching this newspaper, the ministry is now monitoring even more cases of the potentially fatal disease.It was disclosed by Minister Ramsammy that once individuals are suspected to have the disease, members of their families will be visited and prophylactic treatment will be provided to them.This feature, it was reported, has already commenced, even as efforts are made by surveillance teams to advise residents on preventative measures.And since the flooding situation is conducive to the spread of the disease, persons must take precautions by staying out of the water, use closed boots, and also by applying oil-based ointments to their skin before entering the water.Citizens are also being urged to boil or add bleach to their water before use, and to wash vegetables and fruits properly before consuming them.But while every precaution has been taken to guard against the spread of leptospirosis, the Health Minister has said, the ministry has in place a prophylactic programme which will be introduced as soon as there is evidence of a spike in the disease.According to him, the ministry is very prepared in terms of stock levels and in the technical supervisory aspects of the programme. He added that volunteers have been alerted should their assistance be required.The volunteers, the minister said, could be drawn from the various political parties, non-governmental organisations, the private sector, and the religious bodies that had supported the ministry during the 2005 flood.Meanwhile, Health Minister Dr Ramsammy announced recently that he is working closely with his technical officers, so that whenever they think it necessary to start the prophylactic programme, it can commence without delay.The minister had also noted that there should not be total reliance on prophylactic programmes but, rather, the behaviour of citizens should be sufficient enough to stop any potential outbreak.
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