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Oct 22, 2014

Vector Control Unit Resources in Action

Dengue has been identified in certain communities across the country, and that is where the Vector Control Unit pumps its resources. Like in Las Flores, for example, the team collects information on positive dengue tests from private labs and from the Western Regional Hospital, and then targets those homes for spraying. They’ll end up visiting every home in the community, but those households become priority areas. It’s a time and resource-intensive job, but with continuous aid from the European Union, the World Health Organization and the Pan American Health Organization, the Unit has been reporting real success.


Kim Bautista, Vector Control Chief of Operations, Ministry of Health

Kim Bautista

“We had eleven vehicles handed over sometime in August. Through that project sometime this month we should be receiving an additional three vehicles. That is in addition to what we had at the various regions. That is a big project, the EU vector control project, it’s a two point two million Belize dollar project, and we are seeing a lot of advancements in terms of equipping the staff, mobilizing the staff, and we are having quite a bit of positive results. In terms of malaria, for example, we have malaria down to about four villages in Stann Creek this year, and less than ten cases, which is unprecedented for us. We haven’t seen that success since the late sixties, early seventies. So we’re making quite a bit of advancements in terms of that. What you must understand for Dengue and Chikungunya, the surveillance for Chikungunya basically piggy-backs on the Dengue surveillance program because you are dealing with the same mosquito vector, you’re dealing with the same breeding sites, you’re dealing with a similar type virus, and so if you’re strengthening the Dengue program, which we are strengthening, you should see better results in the coming months, and especially if we were to face an outbreak of Chikungunya down the road.”


In addition to specific operations like this one, the Vector Control Unit continues to maintain spraying for vector-borne diseases countrywide.

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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