Health officials suspect new virus…samples sent overseas for confirmation

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The Public Health Ministry is suspicious of a new virus coming into play and hopes that samples sent to the Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA) could give some confirmation.

virusPublic Health Minister, Dr George Norton told members of the media on Friday that a large number of doctors have related that they have come across varying symptoms that do not correspond with those of the Zika virus.

He said this may indicate that the Ministry could very well have another virus on its hands. While he could not give the name of the suspected virus, he said the complaints from doctors are many.

Norton said the Ministry would only be able to identify or pronounce with some amount of certainty after laboratory tests make some confirmation.

He said the Ministry has already begun this process by sending samples to CARPHA for testing.

Meanwhile, giving an update on the status of the Zika virus in Guyana, Norton said that there are still five confirmed cases. According to him, those patients are also being quarantined.
Late last month, Dr Norton had reported that Government had identified someone who would be sent to the CARPHA to be trained in identifying the Zika virus.

While there has been no indication that there has been a widespread transmission of the virus, Dr Norton said there are a number of persons who may have the virus, as they display signs and symptoms that are closely associated with it. However, since Guyana lacks trained personnel in its medical institutions to detect the virus, the suspected cases are not promptly detected.

 

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