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First fatality Chikungun-virus noted on St. Martin

SATURDAY, 18 JANUARY 2014

MARIGOT–The Préfecture announced Friday that one death has been recorded, but “indirectly” attributed to the Chikungunya virus.

The victim was an 81-year-old man who died due to complications from the presence of another unidentified condition.

St. Martin has registered 245 confirmed cases of Chikungunyna to date since the epidemic began, it was noted at Thursday’s meeting between the Préfet, the Chikungunya management committee and Agence Regional de Santé (ARS) Territorial Délégué Pascal Godefroy.

With regard to the general situation it was decided to install a follow-up and coordination committee that will be in charge of implementing action plans. This committee will meet every two weeks to go over the effectiveness of six subjects: specific communication, communication with schools, management of waste, controlling and eradicating breeding sites, assisting persons such as the elderly who have difficulty in protecting themselves from mosquito bites, and environmental concerns.

The next meeting programmed for this particular committee is February 3. Meanwhile the Préfecture assured that fogging was ongoing in all districts of the French side. It also reminded citizens of the precautions to take to stop the spread of Chikungunya, including throwing out any stagnant water collecting in containers, flower vases, old tyres, certain plants, etc.

Rain gutters should be checked to see if they are not blocked; mosquito repellent should be applied liberally and the wearing of long sleeves and long pants is advised; doors and windows should have mosquito screens attached; and cisterns should be covered. Larvae-eating Golomine fish can be added to non-potable water cisterns.

Source: The Daily Herald, St. Maarten

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