PORT OF SPAIN, Trinidad, Thursday February 23, 2017 – The Ministry of Health in Trinidad and Tobago is reporting that the number of confirmed cases of Zika since the onset of the epidemic in February last year, has reached 718.
And of those, 463 confirmed cases were in pregnant women.
And so far this year, there have been four confirmed births of babies with microcephaly, a birth defect in which a baby’s head is smaller than expected when compared to babies of the same sex and age. Two of the mothers in those cases had tested positive for the virus during the course of their pregnancy.
The ministry said in a statement that it is awaiting test results to determine the cause of the other two cases of microcephaly, noting that the number is in keeping with expected international rates of Zika related complications.
The Ministry reminded the public, especially pregnant women or those planning to become pregnant, to adhere to the following guidelines to reduce the likelihood of contracting the Zika virus.
It added that it was maintaining close communication with the Ministry of Social Development and Family Services to ensure that assistance, as required, is made available to the babies and families affected by the disease.
“All cases of microcephaly are treated with the utmost confidentiality and sensitivity by the Ministry of Health and the Regional Health Authorities. It is expected that the privacy of the affected families will be respected at this time,” the ministry said.