HEALTH MINISTRY ADVISES PUBLIC ON CHICKENPOX

 

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The Ministry of Health and Medical Services is advising the public to take precautions in preventing and controlling the spread of chickenpox.

 

This follows 53 cases of chicken pox that were reported in the Suva subdivision last month.

 

The Ministry is advising people with chickenpox to avoid attendance to childcare, school, work and to avoid public places.

 

The Ministry is urging the public to take necessary precautions and people with chickenpox should cover their nose and mouth when coughing or sneezing, dispose of soiled tissues, wash their hands well and not to share eating utensils, food or drinking cups.

 

Chickenpox (varicella) is a viral illness caused by the herpes zoster virus (also known as the Varicella-Zoster virus).

 

The infection is contagious and anyone who has not had chickenpox or has not been vaccinated in the past is at risk.

 

The symptoms of chickenpox occur two weeks after people are exposed to the virus. Chickenpox may begin with a sudden slight fever, running nose, feeling generally unwell and a skin rash. The rash usually begins as small red lumps that turn into little blisters that usually break leaving scabs.

 

The Virus is spread by coughing in the early stages and later by direct contact with the fluid in the blisters. Pregnant women should avoid contact with anyone with chickenpox and should see their doctor for suspected chicken pox like illness.

 

Most people recover without complications however, the infection can lead to serious complications, such as pneumonia and inflammation of the brain.

Press Release