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Public health response and lessons learned from the 2014 chikungunya epidemic in Grenada.

Rev Panam Salud Publica; 41: e57, 2017 Aug 21.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-28902270
In June 2014, the first cases of chikungunya virus (CHIKV) were diagnosed on the island of Carriacou, part of the tri-island state of Grenada. In the three months that followed, CHIKV spread rapidly, with conservative estimates of the population infected of at least 60%. Multiple challenges were encountered in the battle to manage the spread and impact of this high-attack rate virus, including 1) limited indigenous laboratory diagnostic capabilities; 2) an under-resourced health care system; 3) a skeptical general public, hesitant to accept facts about the origin and mode of transmission of the new virus; and 4) resistance to the vector control strategies used. Lessons learned from the outbreak included the need for 1) a robust and reliable epidemiological surveillance system; 2) effective strategies for communicating with the general population; 3) exploration of other methods of mosquito vector control; and 4) a careful review of all health care policies and protocols to ensure that effective, organized responses are triggered when an infectious outbreak occurs.