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Sep 25, 2019

DHS Office Confirms 3 Dengue-Related Death

The Office of the Director of Health Services is reporting three dengue-related deaths since the outbreak of dengue in Belize. They include two maternal cases that were recorded back in August and the most recent death of a young girl from southern Belize, with a pre-existing condition whose health deteriorated rapidly and died at the K.H.M.H. last week.  But even as the number of cases in Belize continues to rise, the Ministry of Health says that this past week was the lowest number of new infections over the last five weeks. The statistics up to Saturday now show that a total of three thousand, six hundred and seventy-five cases have been diagnosed this year; close to one thousand, six hundred are suspected clinical cases and two thousand, ninety-seven have been confirmed by laboratory. The DHS says that the system remains vigilant with hands-on training still ongoing across the four health regions.


Marvin Manzanero

Dr. Marvin Manzanero, Director of Health Services [File: September 20th, 2019]

“Southern Health Region still remains the facility that is getting more cases; the numbers in terms of hospitalizations have gone down in the western and northern health region—we haven’t seen those numbers; we only have those for southern health region. We are still doing training with the staff in this regard. This would be, if we do have the confirmation, the third death that would be associated to dengue or is, even if you don’t confirmed, it is associated to dengue. Beyond the breeding sites, which is primary prevention, I think it is also being able to determine at which point in time you seek medical attention. If you have underlying diseases; diabetes, hypertension, obesity, older folks, younger children and you are bringing them rather late into the disease, that makes it more complicated because I think people are aware that there is no specific treatment; it is a virus. So it is really supportive treatment.  You also have to look at whether people are medicating. People still I think are using medications relating to anti-inflammatory medications; the more common ones: naproxen, diclofenac, baby aspirin. Those are not really used in dengue. It is really paracetamol, acetaminophen that should be used initially. And if patient is not improving they need to seek medical attention that you avoid these particular situations.”

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