CPS National Mosquito Elimination Community Program in Saunders a Success

Vector control team with volunteers from Community Development, Inspectorate and the Red Cross who were later joined by Minister of Public Health Emil Lee to survey the Saunders area on August 20 as part of the “Beat ZikV” program.

GREAT BAY, Sint Maarten (DCOMM) – The Minister of Public Health Emil Lee’s National Mosquito Elimination Community Program Zika Virus disease (ZikV) “Beat ZikV,” was a success in Saunders on August 20.

Gerald Davelaar, coordinator for CPS for the program, said he was very pleased with the kick-off start of the project whereby the residents in the area were very cooperative with personnel from the Ministry and volunteers who were out in the field in Saunders Saturday, August 20.

Approximately 100 premises were visited, of which 51 houses.  One in every five houses was found positive with mosquito larvae.  The House Index is 18 per cent and the World Health Organization threshold is around two per cent.

Minister of Public Health Emil Lee was also present and shared out information while speaking with residents about source reduction in how to eliminate mosquito breeding sites.

The community program calls for a close collaboration with the people of Sint Maarten and entails house to house visits with one on one education on elimination of mosquito breeding sites in and around the house.

The program also includes inspection of the surroundings of the house by vector controllers; assessment of the findings; set-up and monitoring of traps to study mosquito behavior and larvae development, and if needed targeted fogging of identified locations.

Volunteers from various government entities have been mobilized as volunteers to assist with this community program.

The ultimate purpose is to minimize the occurrence of ZikV by eliminating mosquito breeding sites within the districts with a special focus on the elimination of the Aedes Aegypty mosquito.

CPS reiterates to the population of Sint Maarten as well as visitors to wear light colored clothing at dusk; long sleeve shirts and pants; and use mosquito repellent to prevent being bitten by a mosquito that could possibly be carrying a mosquito borne disease.

CPS re-enforces its message that all residents and businesses need to take proactive measures to prevent mosquitos from breeding.  Be on the alert for mosquito breeding sites and eliminate, especially after heavy rainfall.

Actively destroy or dispose of tin cans, old tires, buckets, unused plastic swimming pools or other containers that collect and hold water. Do not allow water to accumulate in the saucers of flowerpots, cemetery urns/vase or in pet dishes for more than two days.  Throw out the water and turn them over every time it collects water.

An increase in the mosquito population puts residents and visitors at risk. For information about dengue fever, zika and chikungunya prevention measures, you can call CPS 542-2078 or 542-3003 to report mosquito breeding sites or email: surveillance@sintmaartengov.org