Meanwhile health workers were yesterday submitting themselves to be vaccinated, Tilluckdharry told Newsday yesterday afternoon, based on reports from the RHAs.
At a press conference on Friday, Health Minister Terrence Deyalsingh had said that health workers were reluctant to take the vaccines.
Deyalsingh had also reported that 29 persons had been confirmed as having contracted the H1N1 virus, with three fatalities. Two doctors also contracted the H1N1 virus.
Another patient, Stacy Ramkissoon, died on Sunday at the Eric Williams Medical Sciences Complex, and preliminary reports have linked her death to the H1N1. She gave birth to a baby two weeks ago.
The baby died shortly after birth, and Ramkissoon was subsequently warded at the EW MSC in a critical condition.
Asked specifically if the vaccines being administered were ordinary “flu shots”, Tilluckdharry said they were specifically for H1N1.
H1N1 vaccines for members of the public, he said, were being made available at health centres through medical county officers.
More vaccines have been ordered in the event that more was required, he said. He noted also, that facilities put in place by the Port Health Authority for the dreaded Ebola disease at ports-of-entry were also reactivated.
Meanwhile, a Ministry of Health release said that the ministry was awaiting the final results of the autopsy on Ramkissoon’s remains.
Noting the concern and need for timely information, the ministry said, it must be guided by the final results of the autopsy.” The release noted that Ramkissoon’s pregnancy placed her within the high risk category of those who may develop complications from the virus.
The ministry is reminding citizens that the H1N1 may cause severe illness in some persons, including the elderly, infants, young children and pregnant women as well as persons with chronic medical conditions, such as heart, lung, kidney disease, and diabetes. Asthmatics are also advised to become vaccinated.
Influenza can spread when an infected person coughs or sneezes, and droplets containing viruses get into the air and were inhaled by persons nearby. Persons can also become infected by touching surfaces (doorknobs, desks) contaminated with flu viruses, and then touching their eyes, mouth or nose.
To prevent the spread of infectious diseases like influenza, the public is urged to cover their mouth and nose with a tissue when coughing, or sneezing.
Coughing or sneezing into the crook of the elbow is also acceptable.
Washing hands with soap and water regularly, and avoiding close contact with people who have flulike symptoms have also been advised.
Persons displaying symptoms of the flu, and have difficulty breathing, chest tightness, inability to eat or drink, persistent vomiting, or confusion are advised to seek medical attention. For more information about influenza, visit www.