Jamaica News: Vector Control Officer at the Hanover Health Department, Edward Cunningham, says citizens need to adjust their behaviour to prevent diseases spread by the Aedes aegypti mosquito.
Speaking to JIS News after the department’s dengue awareness marches on Friday (August 16) in Lucea, Mr. Cunningham said the marches were aimed at fostering behavioural change among the citizenry of Hanover, as it relates to vector education and control in the parish.
The marches were held in recognition of the ‘National Call to Action Day for Dengue Awareness’, also called ‘D-Day’, which was observed in the island.
National Call to Action Day was initiated by the Ministry of Health and Wellness, as part of its Enhanced Vector Control Programme.
“Today, based on what we are doing, we are trying to stem some of the challenges that the department has been experiencing. For example, we recognise that not a lot of persons buy into the idea that the (Aedes aegypti ) mosquito transmits dengue, chikungunya and Zik V. What we want to do is to help persons, through education, to realise that their behaviours need to change,” Mr. Cunningham told JIS News.
Meanwhile, he is urging residents to destroy mosquito breeding sites as, “while we are concerned about the adult mosquitoes, which are the transmitters of the disease, they (citizens) can intervene at the larval or pupal stages and destroy the young ones.”
For her part, Acting Parish Health Promotion and Education Officer at the Hanover Health Department, Andrene Smith-Benjamin, said the marches were important as persons have so many misconceptions about dengue.
“We hope that through these activities, instead of just talking to them, we want to find out from them what is it that they know and should there be anything that is incorrect, then we should be able to guide them to the right path,” she said.
Two sets of Hanover Health Department staff members marched through the town of Lucea, culminating at the Lucea bus park.
As part of the activities, business owners in and around Lucea were assisted by vector control workers along with other public health workers in the search and destruction of mosquito breeding sites in and around their establishments. Educational material were also given out to commuters.
Source: JIS News