Minister of Health, Hon. Dr. Christopher Tufton is appealing to persons who store water to ensure that they are not breeding mosquitoes. Householders in particular are being urged to search their homes and premises for potential mosquito breeding sites given the recent rainfall which has increased the risk of mosquito breeding and therefore the spread of diseases. The Minister maintains that the majority of breeding sites for the Aedes aegypti mosquito which spreads the dengue, chikungunya and zika viruses are found in and around homes.
“This is an issue that requires householders in particular to take responsibility. You must check your surroundings at least once per week for mosquito breeding sites. When it rains as it has recently, the mosquito population tends to increase because of the stagnant water which provides the conditions for them to breed,” he said.
Individuals should get rid of mosquito breeding sites by looking for anything in which water can settle and either cover it, keep the area dry, clean it regularly, fill it with soil or sand, punch holes into it and recycle or properly dispose of it. Water drums have been identified as some of the main breeding sites for the Aedes aegypti mosquitoes in our homes. The appropriate cover for these is a mesh cover with elastic bands around the perimeter to hold it securely to the containers. The holes in the mesh used should be small enough so that mosquitoes cannot enter.
The Ministry of Health will continue to partner with the Ministry of Local Government and Community Development to engage citizens through Operation: Mosquito Search and Destroy, as we seek to mobilise communities and encourage the active search at least once per week for mosquito breeding sites in and around homes, schools, churches and workplaces.
The Operation is expected to cover all parishes over time.