By NewsDesk @bactiman63
The Costa Rica Health Ministry is calling on the public to eliminate mosquito breeding sites as the number of dengue fever cases reported to date is significantly higher to date than 2019.
According to officials, from the beginning of the year through the end of March, 1,760 cases of dengue in total have been reported, while 542 cases were reported during the same period last year.
The regions with the most cases are Huetar Caribe with 590 and Central North with 241 cases.
“We are in a difficult moment where the country faces COVID-19, but unfortunately the other diseases continue their cycle, that is why we call on the population to help us at home, with the elimination of hatcheries,” said the Dr. Rodrigo Marín Director of Health Surveillance.
Health authorities continue to carry out control and mitigation work, however, the population remains vehemently called to remove from their homes all objects that are possible breeding sites and to continue with the recommended preventive measures, including: Eliminate animal nurseries such as tires, containers, buckets and drinkers, Apply mosquito repellent to exposed skin, Wear long-sleeved shirts and long pants and Using mosquito nets.
As of April 23, 686 confirmed COVID-19 cases have been registered, with an age range of one to 87 years. There are 328 women and 358 men, of whom 619 are Costa Rican and 67 foreigners. Positive cases are recorded in 59 cantons of the seven provinces. Six deaths have been reported.
The health ministry also announced that they will be developing their own COVID-19 test.
Costa Rica seeks the adaptation of protocols to replace parts or stages of commercial kits currently used in official laboratories, by others that fulfill the same function, but using inputs and reagents of lower demand, and validated performance with clinical samples. This will make it possible to have own tests prepared in the country.
“In general terms, the detection of the virus by means of RT-PCR consists of three steps: the extraction of viral genetic material, reverse transcription and detection. Technically, it is possible to substitute components, reagents or technologies for these steps, by others that have less demand pressure on the world market and presumably more easily accessible. The great challenge is to make the clinical sensitivity and specificity of an alternative protocol comparable to that of commercial kits. We have formed a work team and a large logistical support network that will allow us to accelerate the prototyping and testing process to put the results at the service of the competent authorities as soon as possible, ”said Randall Loaiza Montoya, director of the National Center for Biotechnological Innovations ( CENIBiot).
“Costa Rica has human talent and great capabilities. If we work together we will have more and better options to overcome this pandemic, not only in health, but in scientific, social and economic development. With solidarity and union we can transform this crisis into an opportunity ”, stated the President, Carlos Alvarado.
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