Costa Rica health authorities report an increase in malaria cases in the last four weeks in the Northern Zone, prompting reinforcement of the epidemiological fence operation in the border corridor.
Local health services confirmed that there was a total of 138 cases as of November 27, of which 13 are relapses in people infected with the disease.
Authorities of the Ministry of Health, the Costa Rican Social Security Fund (CCSS), with the support of the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO), maintain an epidemiological fence in the communities of Medio Queso, San Gerardo, Cuatro Esquinas, Isla Chica, La Trocha, Las Delicias and Coquital, with the aim of preventing the cases from spreading to nearby places or to other territories in the region.
Vector officials of the Ministry of Health and Primary Care Technical Assistants (ATAPS) of the CCSS, concentrate their work on a house-to-house visit sweep to detect people with symptoms, take blood samples, supply medicines to suspicious people, delivery of awnings and fumigation of areas near the home; Another team of medical professionals and health planning professionals are in charge of the analysis, follow-up and evolution of the reported cases.
The health authorities consider a suspicious case when a person who resides or has visited a malaria area with active transmission in the last 40 days presents a picture of intermittent fever that is usually accompanied by headache, muscle pain, chills and sweating.
During the month of November, the control actions added 810 houses visited, 1,000 awnings impregnated with insecticide delivered and 3,487 rapid tests were taken, of which 35 were positive.
“Given the conditions of high mobility of people that prevail in that area, an intervention process has been established that has consisted of the active search for cases, training actions for community leaders so that they maintain an alert attitude and community commitment , community education on Malaria to the inhabitants of these localities, and coordination with companies to strengthen prevention strategies, ”confirmed Dr. Claudia Rosales from the Huetar Norte Region Health Rectory Directorate.
Considering environmental factors, socioeconomic conditions and the mobility of people in the affected communities, the Ministry of Health will remain on permanent alert until the outbreak is fully controlled.