The Ministry of Health yesterday appealed to Jamaicans to assist in destroying mosquito breeding sites around their homes as it fights to reduce the growing number of dengue cases across the island.
The ministry, meanwhile, said it has heightened its surveillance of dengue fever and has been carrying out increased mosquito control activities, including community-based education and promotion, fogging and source reduction -- treatment and destruction of breeding sites.
Director of Health Promotion and Protection Dr Kevin Harvey said the intensified activities would be continuing, but stressed that the support of householders was needed to comprehensively combat the breeding of mosquitoes that cause dengue fever.
"Although numerous activities are being carried out by the ministry, we cannot make any meaningful dent in controlling the breeding of the Aedes Aegypti mosquito that causes dengue if persons do not assist. We ask that householders, in particular, seek out and destroy mosquito breeding sites. Vases, old tyres, discarded cans, flower pots, barrels, drums, and anything else that can store water can harbour mosquitoes," he said.
The country has recorded an increase in the number of cases of dengue fever since the start of the year, with the ministry reporting 974 suspected cases, as at September 22, 2012, compared to 887 for all of 2011 and 3,202 in 2010 when there was an outbreak.