Protect Yourself From Chikungunya

Thursday, June 19, 2014

The Chattanooga-Hamilton County Health Department urges residents to take steps to prevent chikungunya infection. The Health Department is investigating suspected cases in Hamilton County in people who recently traveled to the Caribbean. The Tennessee Department of Health confirmed the state’s first case of chikungunya last week in a Madison County resident who also visited the Caribbean. Chikungunya is a virus transmitted to people by mosquitoes. The most common symptoms of infection are fever and joint pain.

Travelers can protect themselves by preventing mosquito bites.

According to the CDC, chikungunya was found for the first time in the Americas on islands in the Caribbean in late 2013. The virus is now widespread in the Caribbean and cases have been reported in countries in Africa and Southeast Asia.

Mosquitoes become infected when they feed on a person already infected with the virus. Infected mosquitoes can then spread the virus to other people through bites. Chikungunya is most often spread to people by Aedes mosquitoes, a species found in Tennessee. They bite mostly during the daytime, but may also bite at night. To date, there is no evidence of transmission of chikungunya in Tennessee. Those most at risk are travelers returning from the Caribbean or other areas where chikungunya is present.

Symptoms and treatment: There is no medicine to treat chikungunya infection or disease. Most patients feel better within a week. In some people, the joint pain may persist for months. Once a person has been infected, he or she is likely to be protected from future infections.

Although deaths are rare, those most at risk include the elderly, those with compromised immune systems, and those who have high blood pressure, diabetes and/or heart disease. People at risk for more severe disease include newborns infected around the time of birth, older adults (=65 years), and people with medical conditions.
?- Most people infected with chikungunya will develop some symptoms.
?- Symptoms usually begin 3–7 days after being bitten by an infected mosquito.
?- The most common symptoms are fever and joint pain.
?- Other symptoms may include headache, muscle pain, joint swelling, or rash.
?- To prevent further spread of the virus, it is important for people who are ill with or suspected    of being ill with chikungunya to avoid mosquito bites during the first week of illness.

Prevention:
? - Use air conditioning or window/door screens to keep mosquitoes outside.
? - If you are not able to protect yourself from mosquitoes inside your home or hotel, sleep under a mosquito bed net.
? - Help reduce the number of mosquitoes outside your home or hotel room by emptying standing water from containers such as flowerpots or buckets.
? - When weather permits, wear long-sleeved shirts and long pants.
? - Do not use perfumes, colognes or scented deodorants or soap if you’re going outside, as fragrances may attract insects.
?-  Use permethrin-treated clothing and gear (such as boots, pants, socks, and tents). You can buy pre-treated clothing and gear or treat them yourself:
        o Treated clothing remains protective after multiple washings. See the product information to find out how long the protection will last.
?- Use insect repellents with the following active ingredients:
        o DEET (Products containing DEET include Off!, Cutter, Sawyer, and Ultrathon)
        o Picaridin (also known as KBR 3023, Bayrepel, and icaridin product containing picaridin include Cutter Advanced, Skin So Soft Bug Guard Plus, and Autan [outside the US])
        o Oil of lemon eucalyptus (OLE) or PMD (Products containing OLE include Repel and Off! Botanicals)
        o IR3535 (Products containing IR3535 include Skin So Soft Bug Guard Plus Expedition and SkinSmart)

Always follow product directions and reapply as directed. If you are also using sunscreen, apply sunscreen first and insect repellent second. Follow package directions when applying repellent on children.  Avoid applying repellent to their hands, eyes, and mouth.

If you have recently traveled to affected areas and believe you might have chikungunya, contact your health care provider immediately, especially if you have a fever. Tell your doctor about your travel. You should also notify the Health Department at 209-8190.

For more information, visit the CDC http://www.cdc.gov/chikungunya/index.html.

For travel health advisories, visit http://wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel/notices.


Tennessee To Receive $13.8 Million Aimed At Prescription Opioid Crisis

U.S. Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price, M.D. has announced that the Tennessee Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services will be awarded $13.8 million through the 21st Century Cures Act to help combat the prescription opioid epidemic in Tennessee. This is the largest single federal funding increase for opioid treatment in the state’s history. In his ... (click for more)

17th Annual Bunny Hop! Benefits Chambliss Center For Children

The 17th annual Bunny Hop! event to benefit Chambliss Center for Children will be held on Friday, May 5.  The family-friendly fundraiser will be held in the First Tennessee Pavilion from 6-8:30 p.m. "Parents can enjoy an evening with friends and festivities while their kids take advantage of the numerous activities for children. All ages are welcome and encouraged to attend, ... (click for more)

2 People Shot In Chattanooga Overnight; Dequan Duke In Serious Condition; Frank Russell Has Minor Injury

Two people were shot overnight in Chattanooga.   Dequan Jamal Duke, 24, was in serious condition.   Frank Russell, 22, had a minor injury in a separate incident.   Chattanooga Police responded at 8:40 p.m. on Tuesday to a person shot at 2300 Wilson St.   The victim, Dequan Duke, arrived at a local hospital via a personally owned vehicle ... (click for more)

City Vows Lincoln Park To Be Preserved Despite Major Road, Sewer Projects

City officials vowed on Tuesday that Lincoln Park will be preserved despite a major road extension and sewer relocation planned nearby. Maura Sullivan, the city's chief operating officer, said the Trust for Public Land will hold public meetings geared around ideas for refurbishing the African-American park that once featured ball fields, a swimming pool and other attractions. ... (click for more)

Don't Clog Up The Last Remaining Semi-Unobstructed Route Into Town From North Of The River - And Response

The proposal to turn Hixson Pike in Riverview into a more pedestrian friendly street is more than absurd.   Let's be honest. This is the last semi-unobstructed route into town from north of the river, due to I-27 construction and the bike lane/parking lot that is North Market Street.  So, now the businesses in Riverview would like parking on this main artery? ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: A One-Sided Opportunity

State education commissioner Candace McQueen has apparently fallen and hit her head. She most certainly needs to be examined after she came to Chattanooga on Monday and told the Times-Free Press about an exciting “partnership.” Are you kidding me? Despite the newspaper’s editors actually touting the venture as “promising,” the lady is clearly dancing by herself. With her Achievement ... (click for more)