PHILIPSBURG – On Sunday, February 21, a second case of Zika was confirmed on St. Maarten. This case involves a Dutch tourist from the Netherlands who arrived in St. Maarten on February 3 and departed on February 10.
The person was staying at the Dawn Beach Estates residence area. It wasn’t until February 13, three days after arriving in the Netherlands that the patient experienced symptoms. Similar to the first confirmed case, the person had also travelled to a neighboring island for the day prior to being diagnosed.
The first confirmed case concerns a person who was residing in the Saunders area. Upon diagnosis when the person is most at risk of being bitten by a mosquito and spreading the virus, the person remained at home and was requested to use repellent in order to avoid mosquitos from feeding on their blood.
The Department of Collective Prevention Service (CPS) has also conducted a site visit in the Saunders area and identified five breeding sites in the surroundings of the patient:
- 1Toolkit lid identified larvae
- 2 Painting drum lid identified larvae
- 1 Styrofoam container
- 1 Plastic plate identified larvae
- 2 Soda cans filled with water identified larvae
CPS has also visited the area of Dawn Beach, however that report is still being processed.
As the virus is now touching home here on St. Maarten, persons should be aware of the associated symptoms and consult with their doctor in cases of suspicion of infection.
The Zika virus infection may present few or no symptoms. In general, symptoms are mild and short-lived. Symptoms are similar to those of dengue and chikungunya, and may include conjunctivitis, fever, rash (on the entire body and on face) joint and muscle pain.
“As we continue to monitor and take proactive measures to eliminate breeding grounds and protect the population and visitors, it is important for everyone to clean your surroundings, make use of our reporting mechanisms, (550-CALL/550-2255). This hotline also can be accessed through WhatsApp. We encourage people to send pictures of your reports and provide accurate information on the location. It is also important that persons use repellant correctly and continuously, especially at the times when the mosquito is most active, which is at early morning and evening,” stated Health Minister Emil Lee in a press briefing on Wednesday, February 24.
Source: 721 news Second confirmed case of Zika