A mosquito-born virus called chikungunya is spreading across the Caribbean. Chikungunya causes rash, fever and excruciating joint pain. The illness is rarely fatal; recovery usually takes about a week.
Spokesman for Haiti’s health ministry Ronald Singer confirmed some 1,529 cases of chikungunya recently. The Associated Press reports that the majority of the cases, about 900, were found near the capital of Port-au-Prince. Another 300 cases were confirmed in northwestern Haiti. In neighboring Dominican Republic, authorities have confirmed at least 150 to 200 cases.
The illness is most commonly found in Asia and Africa. It was first detected in the Caribbean in December on the island of St. Martin and has continued to spread across the Caribbean. Chikungunya is transmitted by the Aedes aegypti mosquito, which also transmits dengue fever in the region.
ICC will continue to monitor the chikungunya virus in Haiti and the Dominican Republic and inform you as more information arises.