THE Ministry of Health advises the public that there has been an uptick in cases of conjunctivitis (commonly referred to as ‘red eye’ or ‘pink eye’) as notified through the national surveillance systems.
The ministry in a media release on Friday informed the population that conjunctivitis is a common condition that causes redness and inflammation of the thin layer of tissue that covers the front of the eye (the conjunctiva).
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Systems include: redness, irritation, itchiness, production of tears and clear or yellow discharges that make the eyelids stick together, especially on mornings.
More information obtained from the ministry’s website states that red eye is spread by contact with either the infected tears, pus or any kind of fluids from the eyes of an infected person or sharing items such as eye drops, shades/glasses, microscopes, washrags, towels, pillows, eye make-up etc.
Persons can develop red eye between four and 12 days (average eight days) after being in contact with an infected person and symptoms can last up to two weeks.
The ministry also encourages the public to take the necessary precautions so as to minimise the spread of this disease.
Washing of hands with soap and water regularly (Alcohol-based hand sanitizer is also acceptable)
Regularly clean and sanitise surfaces in common areas (e.g. door knobs, countertops in shared spaces),
Avoid touching your face and eyes,
Avoid close contact with persons who display symptoms of conjunctivitis,
Stay away from school or work if you are ill.
The public is advised to seek medical attention if symptoms are severe or persistent in nature.
The Ministry of Health stated that it will continue to monitor this and all other public health matters to ensure the protection of the population of Trinidad and Tobago.
For further information, persons can visit the ministry’s website at https://health.gov.tt/news/