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Feb 17, 2016

Belize City Council Prepares for Zika

While the heads discuss the Zika in Placencia, in the city, health officials teamed up with the Belize City Council for a sensitization workshop on the virus.  The partnership is fitting since local government is responsible for sanitation.  The idea is to educate residents on a number of issues related to Zika, including the habitat and breeding grounds of the vector.  But, in order for them to pass on that knowledge, personnel from various departments of the Belize City Council had to be prepared with the requisite information.  This morning, Doctor Javier Zuniga from the Ministry of Health’s Central Health Region, along with several other officials, explained the origin of the virus, how it spreads, as well as a community-based approach to prevent an outbreak in Belize.  On hand was Mayor Darrell Bradley.

 

Darrell Bradley

Darrell Bradley, Belize City Mayor

“This morning was a sensitization meeting between personnel from the Ministry of Health and also the key players in the various departments of the Belize City Council.  As was said by the presenters from the Ministry of Health, there is a significant aspect of this that has to do with a community response and stakeholder involvement and that’s where the city council plays a very pivotal role in relation to making sure that we are cooperating with the various departments of the Ministry of Health to do our part.  One of the things that were addressed in the meeting is the need for citizens participation in cleaning their yard, the aspect of clearing out areas which can hold water, breeding grounds for the Aedes Aegypti mosquito.  The aspect of insuring that the city on a whole is kept clean; the idea of cooperating for the spraying of mosquitoes and drain cleaning and so forth, so that when the Ministry of Health works with us and talks about these issues this is where the city council needs to step up its game.  One of the things, yesterday we raised it at our city council’s public meeting, part of my presentation dealt with this meeting this morning and what the community can do to assist various government agencies, including the Ministry of Health and the city council to make sure that we keep an incident-free society and in also keeping that public awareness out there that this is not an alarm, it’s not a crisis but they are things that people in our community need to do to be aware.”

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