Two hundred and ninety four (294) cases of conjunctivitis commonly referred to as Red Eye have been reported here during the period January to August 2017.
The Ministry of Health said that there have been reported cases of conjunctivitis since the beginning of year, which peaked during the months of May and June.
This disclosure comes days after Dr. Virginia Asin-Oostburg, Director of Surveillance, Disease Prevention and Control at the Caribbean Public Health Agency CARPHA said that several Caribbean islands have reported outbreaks of conjunctivitis at health facilities and medical practices.
Conjunctivitis refers to inflammation of the membrane covering the whites of the eyes and the inside of the eyelids. The congestion of blood vessels in this membrane gives rise to a reddened appearance and explains the more common names Red Eye or Pink Eye.
The Ministry advises that the risk of getting conjunctivitis or spreading it to someone else can be reduced by practicing some simple good hygiene steps, such as:
- avoiding close contact with persons who are ill with conjunctival symptoms;
- keep unwashed hands away from face and eyes;
- wash hands often with soap and warm water; or use an alcohol based hand sanitizer.
Persons should also disinfect frequently touched surfaces such as door knobs and counter tops in shared spaces.