Public Health Minister, Dr George Norton on Monday stated that while there appears to be a rise in dengue fever, its manifestation is not alarming for the Ministry.Recently, the Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA) recorded 303 confirmed cases of dengue in Guyana, as of the first week in August – which is a huge increase from the 142 probable cases in 2015.However, when Dr Norton was asked about the rise in the mosquito-borne virus, he stated that one of the reasons for the hike was because patients were either not taking their medications, or not seeking help from healthcare facilities. In many of these cases, he said, the virus is transmitted from the infected person to a mosquito which bites them and it would in turn bite another person and infect them.Public Health Minister, Dr George Norton“CARPHA is a reputable institution and I accept their statistics. But this is not only a Ministry of Public Health problem, the people also have their part to play,” Norton said.“Patients need to take their pills or get themselves tested when they have the signs or the symptoms,” he added, stating that the Ministry has upped its game in educating and creating awareness on the mosquito which carries the virus. He noted that the Ministry, through the Vector Control Services, has continued its fogging exercises and donation of treated bed nets.Of late, reports of dengue have been eclipsed by the emergence of Chikungunya and Zika, all of which are transmitted by the Aedes aegypti mosquito. The symptoms of all three of the viruses are identical, making it difficult to differentiate. The symptoms include fever, rash, headache, muscle and joint pain.So far, there have been 5375 reported cases of Chikungunya, with 264 confirmed cases, and 35 confirmed cases of Zika in Guyana.
– escape with gold, cash, guns and ammunition Four armed men on Wednesday last carried out a brazen daylight robbery on China High Tech Mining Company at Black Water Backdam, Cuyuni River, Region Seven (Cuyuni-Mazaruni).The incident occurred between 12:45h and 17:00h.The men, who were all masked and reportedly spoke Portuguese, broken English and Spanish, carted off 50 ounces of raw gold estimated at $13 million, US$500 and two GPS systems belonging to the owner of the mining company.In addition, they also took with them one 12-gauge semi-automatic shotgun with six matching rounds and one AR rifle along with eight matching rounds, property of Marks Interior Communication.Based on reports received, Marks Interior Communication is contracted by the Chinese company to provide armed security during a dredge wash-down.However, about 12:00h on the day in question, the General Manager and a crew were escorted to the company’s office to oversee the production by Stephen Hall, an unarmed security officer. Another guard, Jason Critchlow, who was armed with a 12-gauge shotgun, had left the crew and gone to the kitchen to have something to eat.However, on his way back, the four masked armed men emerged from the nearby bushes and held him at gunpoint. Critchlow was ordered to drop his firearm and he complied.After taking possession of the firearm, two men remained on the road while the other two invaded the office and opened fire. Several workers, including Hall, attempted to escape, but several rounds were discharged in their direction thus stopping them from doing so.During the gunfire, Hall, of Diamond, East Bank Demerara (EBD), was shot to his left middle finger. Subsequently, the crew was gathered and one of them was ordered to burn the amalgam gold while the gunmen stood guard.After collecting the recovered gold, the men ransacked the office where they found a rifle that was stored in a strongbox. The gunmen then made good their escape.Police were summoned to the scene, where they discovered five 12-gauge and one .223 spent shells. The injured Hall was air-dashed to the Georgetown Public Hospital by an Air Services Limited helicopter.The Police are yet to make an arrest.Earlier in the month, four armed men executed a robbery on a mining camp at Baboon Backdam, Cuyuni River, Region Seven, escaping with a quantity of raw gold and other valuables, including a licensed shotgun.It was reported that the bandits were armed with rifles and shotguns and were clad in dark-coloured clothing. The men also spoke a foreign language.Initial investigations revealed that about 28 workers attached to Mohamed’s Enterprise were in the mining camp when the men held the camp hostage.The miners were ordered to hand over all the raw gold that was kept in the camp and personal items, including the shotgun.After committing the robbery, the gunmen left. No one was injured during the ordeal. A team comprising members of the Joint Services had been sent to investigate the robbery, but, to date, no arrests have been made.