Jul 15, 2009 News Comments Off on Approximately 20,000 persons vaccinated against seasonal flu
The Ministry of Health has been able to vaccinate some 19,600 persons across the country against seasonal influenza.
This is according to Minister of Health, Dr. Leslie Ramsammy who noted that although the vaccination does not guard against the H1N1 virus, it would help those who are already infected with seasonal influenza.
It was noted that children under one year old and the elderly are being targeted in this campaign.
In Region Two, 500 persons were vaccinated, while in Region Three, 1,400; Region Four, (East Coast Demerara), 1,212, (East Bank Demerara) 760; and Georgetown, 3040.
In Region Five, a total of 2095 were also vaccinated, Region Six 2,749; Region Seven 700, and Region Eight, 250.
According to Minister Ramsammy, 1,000 doses of vaccines were sent to Region Nine, but the Ministry of Health is still to receive the statistics on the number of persons vaccinated there.
However, a mere 10 persons received vaccination in Region 10, the Health Minister said.
This campaign was embarked upon by the Ministry of Health after the news about the H1N1 virus.
It was explained that it has been shown that for persons who have mixed infections, the severity if the illness is greater as well as the mortality, thus the Ministry is ensuring that the vulnerability of the virus is reduced.
All elderly patients in hospitals will be provided with vaccines against the seasonal flu, along with those in the Palms, while the Ministry of Human Services will assist the Ministry of Health with the elderly who collect their pension every month.
Following reports by Chief Executive Officer of the Georgetown Public Hospital Corporation, Michael Khan, that there might be another case of the virus found in Guyana, Minister Ramsammy said that it has not been confirmed that it is a H1N1 virus.
He explained that it is ‘just’ another case that fits the criteria and like the others, it has been sent for testing.
Since the H1N1 virus emerged, a number of actions have been instituted by the Ministry of Health, such as heightened surveillance at ports of entry, including the international airports, seaports and at the borders.
Through a number of actions, persons entering Guyana will be monitored for fever and flu.
The ports of entry surveillance will include the airlines and ships submitting Aircraft and Ship Health Declaration as the Health Ministry will rigidly implement the International Health Regulations (IHR) requirement.
The Ministry of Health has also heightened its health facilities surveillance. Every health facility must report all fever cases, while a special unit has been established to follow the cases.
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