The Secretary PASCOE KASE has issued a statement today to bring the country up to date on the current information on the ZIKA VIRUS and to assure citizens of actions the National Health Department is taking to prepare the country for any occurrences.
He says the ZIKA virus is spread by the same mosquitoes that carry dengue, yellow fever, chikungunya and other mosquito- borne diseases. He pointed out that for most people, ZIKA virus infection causes either no symptoms or a mild dengue like illness that may include fever, skin rash muscle and joint pain, conjunctivitis, tiredness and headache. Symptoms normally last for between 4 and 7 days and can be treated with common pain and fever medicine, rest and drinking plenty of water.
THERE IS NO VACCINE YET AGAINST ZIKA VIRUS.
So what is the PNG Government doing about ZIKA VIRUS?
The Secretary has confirmed that the National Health Department with technical support from the WORLD HEALTH ORGANIZATION in PNG, is taking immediate action to manage the prospect of this disease. He advised that the Department was rapidly increasing surveillance to look for cases of ZIKA VIRUS disease as well as cases of microcephaly and other birth defects that may be caused by ZIKA VIRUS.
He said his Department is providing information about the disease to health care managers and providers across PNG. Secretary KASE advised members of the public to consult with their health care provider if they think they may have contracted ZIKA VIRUS. He said his Department is providing information about the disease to health care manager and providers across PNG.
FOR PREGNANT WOMEN/DO TO PROTECT THEMSELVES AND THEIR UNBORN BABIES
Secretary Kase stressed that a definite relationship has not been established between ZIKA and BIRTH DEFECTS. As a precaution however, he said that all people, particularly mothers, should limit EXPOSURE to mosquitoes, wear light coloured clothes that covers as much of their body as possible and apply a trusted insect repellent.