Trinidad PM contracts dengue
Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar is diagnosed in the midst of a campaign to sensitize the public about the disease.
PORT OF SPAIN, Trinidad, Wednesday August 17, 2011 – In the midst of an effort to sensitize residents about dengue fever, Prime Minister Kamla Persad Bissessar has contracted the disease, but is said to be doing well and working from home.
She was recently diagnosed with dengue fever – classical type which is the less severe strain –, according to a statement from the Office of the Prime Minister which also said she was resting comfortably and receiving medical care and supervision.
"Despite my illness I am following all medical instructions so as to ensure that I will soon be back on my feet and fully functioning,” she said in the statement.
Persad-Bissessar said she had been advised that she could work from her home office while she continues to receive medical supervision.
“I will continue to run the affairs of State unless otherwise advised by my doctors that it is not practical so to do,” she added.
The Prime Minister had been in the process of consulting with the Minister of Health on how to enhance and intensify the education drive Government embarked on to sensitise the population on dengue fever, when she became a victim.
“This indicates that no one is immune from this dangerous disease, and it reinforces that the entire population MUST be extremely vigilant and take the necessary precautions to prevent contracting dengue, especially with children,” Persad-Bissessar said.
“Let me also emphasise the need to immediately seek professional medical attention if you have any symptoms of dengue (which include fever, body pains and headaches) since treating the disease as an ordinary flu can cause more medical problems.”
The Ministry of Health has undertaken an aggressive Aedes aegypti mosquito eradication programme across Trinidad and Tobago.
The Ministries of Health, Communications, Local Government and Education have also embarked on a multi-media education and sensitisation programme across the country to combat the dengue outbreak on several fronts.