Conjunctivitis – or ‘pink eye” – has spread across the country. After numerous cases reported, the Ministry of Health (MOH) issued a press release on September 20th, stating that the Northern and Central Health regions were most affected. San Pedro Town is in the Central Health Region, and according to Belize District Primary Health Care Coordinator Dr. Javier Zuniga, there have been an alarming number of cases reported at the Dr. Otto Rodriguez San Pedro PolyClinic II.

“We have been having 20 or more persons per day with cases of pink eye…mostly children,” said Doctor Zuniga. Conjunctivitis is an inflammation or swelling of the conjunctiva which causes irritation and reddening of the eyes. It is caused by bacteria or viruses which can spread easily from person to person, and it causes redness of the eyes, watery or pus-like discharge, graininess or burning of the eyes, etc. Steps to prevent contracting conjunctivitis includes the proper washing of hands, and avoid touching the eyes. It is not recommended to use contact lenses or sharing personal items like makeup, brushes and pillows. The MOH advises everyone to limit physical contact with anyone suspected of having conjunctivitis. Any person that is showing signs of pink eye is advised to seek medical attention and stay at home until they are well.

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