The Ministry of Health is once again advising persons to keep their surroundings clean by preventing unnecessary water collection to avoid the breeding of the Aedes Aegypti mosquito that carries theZikavirus.
At a press conference in the Ministry of Health Head Office on Park Street, Port-of-Spain, Dr Clive Tilluckdharry, principal medical officer in environmental health, made the plea once again.
"Last year we had the chikungunya (chik v)virus. It is the same mosquito that is transmitting theZikavirus. Just like chik v, just like dengue, it is the Aedes Aegypti mosquito. It isthe same same thing we are stressing.We have to be vigilant in eradicating the mosquito from our yards, from our homes," Tilluckdharry said.
The Caribbean's tropical climate has been susceptible to mosquito-borne diseases such as yellow fever, malaria, dengue fever and, most recently, chikungunya. The Caribbean is now on alert for theZikavirus which is new to the region and has been detected in Brazil.
Zikavirus is spread by the bite of an infectedAedes Aegyptimosquito which can also transmit dengue and chikungunya.
Persons withZikavirus infection may have no symptoms, or may suffer mild to moderate symptoms including fever, headache, rash, and muscle and joint pain. No deaths have ever been reported fromZikavirus infection and complications are rare.
Tilluckdharry said the same public alerts that occurred for the chikungunya virus can apply for theZikavirus.
Last month the Ministry of Health released a public notice advising people to be aware of theZikavirus.
"Since Aedes Aegyptimosquitoes are present in Trinidad and Tobago and people travel in and around the Caribbean, Trinidad and Tobago must prepare for the introduction of theZikavirus. The Ministry of Health therefore urges citizens to take steps to prevent all mosquito-borne diseases including dengue, chikungunya andZika," the advisory stated.