Use sand or aggregate in flower vases in cemeteries instead of water


20-February-2013

The Ministry of Health has made this appeal following recent concern with regard to the suspected cases of dengue fever in the country.

As flower pots in cemeteries are the major mosquito breeding sites in the country, using sand or aggregate in all flower vases reduces mosquito breeding grounds.
A communiqué from the Ministry of Health writes that in Seychelles, we have had outbreaks of chikungunya and dengue in the past.

The ministry initiated a national campaign in October 2006 and managed to eliminate chikungunya. However, diseases, particularly dengue, may have possibly returned as we still have the mosquitoes which transmit these diseases. Transmission of mosquito-borne diseases occurs when mosquitoes bite an infected person and then bite another person and inject the virus in the blood of the other person. 

Mosquitoes lay their eggs in stagnant water and the cemetery is one place that accumulates water in the many flower vases.

Therefore, people are being urged to use sand or aggregate instead of water. People are also being reminded to ensure that all vases are pierced at the bottom to guarantee that water does not accumulate in the vases. It is, however, preferable to lay all flowers on the grave itself.

As we still have the mosquitoes that transmit the dengue and chikungunya viruses as well as other potentially serious diseases in our environment, the Ministry of Health is also reinforcing the following messages:

1. Maintain a clean environment and remove any potential mosquito breeding grounds (old tyres, cans, etc.) from your home.
2. Use long sleeves and long trousers, especially after 5pm, when travelling to infected countries.
3. Use mosquito repellent.
4. Use insecticide spray in your room before going to sleep.
5. Use a mosquito net if you have one.
6. Report to the health centre if you’re having any of the following signs symptoms: joint pain and stiffness, muscle pain, weakness, diarrhea, vomiting, headache and skin rash.

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