My Thoughts on Technology and Jamaica: How 4 Jamaicans dead and 35 infected as H1N1 (Influenza A) goes on a Rampage

Sunday, March 6, 2016

How 4 Jamaicans dead and 35 infected as H1N1 (Influenza A) goes on a Rampage

Jamaica is now on H1N1 (Influenza A) alert as swine flu is now a serious killer as reported in the article “Health Ministry Issues Warning As Swine Flu Spreads” Published Sunday March 6, 2016, The Jamaica Gleaner.

And yes we're still tackling Dengue fever, Zika virus (ZIKV), chikungunya (CHIKV) as pointed out in the article “Jamaica on high alert”, published Sunday, March 06, 2016 by Anika Richards, The Jamaica Observer.

Now comes news of a fourth death from H1N1 (Influenza A). This time, it's a 29-y-o woman pregnant with twins as reported in the article “Woman Pregnant With Twins Dies From Swine Flu”, published Saturday March 5, 2016, The Jamaica Gleaner.

The first to die was Dr. Suzanna Roye, a 50 year old doctor who died sometime before Saturday February 20th 2016 as reported in my blog article entitled “Why Dr. Suzanna Roye died from Influenza A (H1N1) as Ministry of Health stocks up on Tamiflu”. 

29-y-o woman pregnant with twins is now the fourth person to have died from H1N1 at the UWHI (University Hospital of the West Indies) over a period of three (3) weeks as reported in the article “Jamaica records third swine flu-related death”, published Saturday, March 05, 2016, The Jamaica Observer, making H1N1's kill rate almost as fast as Jamaica's murder rate.

This is happening despite assurances from Chief Medical Officer Dr Winston De la Haye that they have adequate medication to treat the H1N1 (Influenza A) Virus as reported in the article “No Shortage Of H1N1 Medication - De La Haye”, published Monday February 22, 2016, The Jamaica Gleaner.

So who are the other two people died over the course of three weeks from this fast spreading killer virus?

H1N1 kills four in 3 weeks - How Ministry of Health has no medication to fight H1N1 

There is now a total of thirty five (35) Jamaican infected with H1N1:

1.      28 adults
2.      7 Children 

After Dr. Suzanna Roye, a 49-year-old woman died a week later at the UHWI as reported in the article “JUST IN: Jamaica Records Second Swine Flu-Related Death”, Published Sunday February 28, 2016, by Jovan Johnson, The Jamaica Gleaner.

Then on Saturday October 5th 2016, a 84-year-old woman died from H1N1 (Influenza A). H1N1 isn’t targeting the elderly; they all died from weakened immune systems due to other underlying factors.

The disease mainly targets the following people:

1.      Elderly
2.      Infants
3.      Persons with chronic medical conditions, such as heart, lung, kidney disease, and diabetes and Asthma
4.      Pregnant women
5.      Young children

So why are we hearing about this just now?

H1N1 got no extensive Press Coverage - Jamaica occupied with Jamaica General Elections 2016

This story didn't get much press as the news was flooded with news of the General Election which was barely won by the JLP (Jamaica Labour Party) with 32 seats versus 31 from the PNP (People's National Party) as reported in “Awesome Andrew - JLP Beats PNP At Its Own Game, Organisation”, Published Sunday February 28, 2016 by Gary Spaulding, The Jamaica Gleaner.

Clearly Tamiflu isn't effective as it really only treats the symptoms of H1N1. Also, it might not have any effect on this current strain of the virus. Also, the national H1N1 plan make no mention of vaccination against the disease as noted in the article “H1N1 – What You Need To Know; National Influenza Plan Activated”, published Wednesday February 24, 2016, The Jamaica Gleaner.

So how do you prevent yourself and your loved ones from getting sick?

How to fight H1N1 (Influenza A) - Vitamins to boost your immune system

Good to note that the Influenza A (H1N1) isn't airborne but spread via your aerosolized body fluids i.e. saliva or sputum. 

This is ejected from the mouth or nose of the infected patient. Once it lands on a commonly used surface e.g. tables, chairs or doorknobs which other people touch, spreading Influenza A (H1N1) viral particles becomes as simple as touching these surfaces.

Doctors, Health care workers and regular Jamaicans can reduce the spread of Influenza A (H1N1) virus by doing the following:

1.      Avoid contact with persons with flu-like symptoms
2.      Avoid intimate contact including hand shaking and kissing
3.      Cover your mouth with a tissue when coughing or sneezing
4.      Health care workers wearing specialized masks and other PPE
5.      Wash your hands frequently and properly

98% of persons infected with Influenza A (H1N1) rarely show symptoms as noted in the article “Leicester Royal Infirmary closes wards over swine flu”, published 18 February 2016, BBC.

The remaining 2% tend to have the following symptoms:

1.      Dry cough
2.      Headache
3.      High fever
4.      Muscle and joint pains
5.      Runny nose
6.      Sore throat
7.      Tiredness
8.      Unwell feeling

Most people recover after one or two weeks with Doctors prescribing the following drugs for the above symptoms:

1.         Panadol/Tylenol
2.         DPH
3.         Claritine [loratidine]
4.         Cetirizine
5.         Fexofenadine

Good to note that these drugs do not kill the virus but merely treat the symptoms as follows:

1.      Panadol/Tylenol is an Acetaminophen and is taken to relieve the Muscle and joint pains
2.      DPH, claritine [loratidine], cetirizine, or fexofenadine with pseudoephedrine is used to reduce sneezing and the production of mucus and sputum

Alternatively, you can buy Pineapple and make your own cough syrup by blending the whole pineapple as noted in my blog article entitled “Why JP Tropical Foods Pineapples will be a hit in Jamaica this Christmas”.  

Finally, taking multivitamins such as Vitamin C and Vitamin B Complex will help to boost your immune system and allow you to survive as this killer goes on a rampage.

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