- As of Tuesday, 7 November, there have been 18 laboratory confirmed cases of Dengue in the Cayman Islands;

- Since the beginning of 2023, 97 investigations have been conducted to date by the Public Health team (including the 18 confirmed cases);

- Of the 18 cases, 9 are considered imported cases with recent travel history where Dengue transmission is known, whereas the remaining 9 cases had no travel history and are considered locally acquired cases.

“The current outbreak of Dengue within our region continues to be the primary point of caution for us here in the Cayman Islands,” explains Dr. Nick Gent, Chief Medical Officer. “As we enter the holiday season, and as people get ready to travel, we continue to remind our residents to take all the necessary precautions, which includes familiarising themselves with the Dengue situation at their destination.”

The Jamaican Ministry of Health & Wellness confirmed on Thursday, 2 November, that the country has on record “2,763 suspected, presumed and confirmed cases of Dengue” as of 1 November, with 694 confirmed cases as of that time. The full release can be found here: https://www.moh.gov.jm/more-than-600-confirmed-dengue-cases-in-jamaica/

“Travellers heading to Jamaica should continue to monitor the situation in the country, adhere to all prevention methods, and ensure that they are seeking medical treatment if they become symptomatic during or after their visit,” Dr. Samuel Williams-Rodriguez, Medical Officer of Health emphasises.

For more information, please contact the Public Health Department on 244-2648.

Travel Advice

1- Research your destination and learn the risk for Dengue and other mosquito-borne illnesses such as chikungunya, malaria, and zika.

2- Review the country specific travel recommendations, health notices and warnings, including any identified ‘hot spots’.

3- Add mosquito repellent to your packing list. Repellents that contain DEET are recommended.

4- Include items of clothing with long sleeves and long pants for additional protection.

5- Sleep indoors in places with air conditioning and window screens. If this is not possible, use a bed net.

6- Seek medical attention if you develop symptoms of dengue.

Local /Community Prevention Advice

- Use mosquito repellent, especially during peak times of mosquito traffic (dusk and dawn)

- Use light long sleeve shirts and long pants to prevent bites

- Take steps to keep mosquitoes out of your home via the use of air conditioning, window and door screens

- Once a week, empty and scrub, turn over, cover, or throw out items that hold water, such as tires, buckets, planters, toys, pools, birdbaths, flowerpots, or trash containers. Check inside and outside your home. Mosquitoes lay eggs near water.

- Contact the Mosquito Research and Control Unit on 949-2557 with a service request should you find the mosquito situation in your area warrants attention

Additional advice on mosquito control:

Mosquito Research and Control Unit (MRCU): 949-2557 in Grand Cayman or 948-2223 in Cayman Brac.

Department of Environmental Health (DEH): 949-6696 in Grand Cayman or 948-2321 in Cayman Brac.

Sidebar: More about Dengue Fever

Most people recover without any complications, using pain relievers and bed rest. Once a patient has developed a fever, the infectious period lasts for one week only.

Dengue symptoms include:

• high fever;

• severe headache;

• backache;

• joint and eye pain;

• nausea and vomiting

• Muscle and or bone pain

• A rash (sometimes) may be visible two to five days after the onset of fever.

• Nausea or vomiting (sometimes)

• Signs of bleeding (such as pinpoint red or purple spots on the skin, nosebleeds,

• bleeding gums, blood in urine or stool, or vaginal bleeding) dengue fever is seen in a severe form known as dengue hemorrhagic fever, severe dengue, or dengue shock syndrome.