Zika Virus Update for Anguilla, Antigua & Barbuda, Barbados, BVIs, Jamaica, Mustique, Nevis, St Barts, St Kitts, St Lucia, St Martin, Sint Maarten, St Vincent & the Grenadines, The Bahamas and the Turks & Caicos Islands.
Statement published 19 October 2018 :
The Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA) is pleased to announce that the World Health Organization (WHO) has removed its Zika virus country classification scheme, which categorized most of the Caribbean territories as having active Zika virus transmission.
This removal by the WHO comes on the heels of data released by CARPHA, giving evidence that the Zika virus transmission in the Caribbean had been interrupted for over 12 months, or was at undetectable levels, thereby posing very little risk to residents and visitors to the Region. This was matched by data shared with CARPHA by Canada, the United Kingdom, Europe and the United States of America, which showed that no Zika had been detected for over 12 months in travelers returning from the Caribbean to their countries.
This evidence was used by CARICOM to pen a letter to the WHO Director General calling for the immediate reclassification of CARPHA Member States from Category 1 (having active Zika transmission) to Category 3 (having no Zika transmission), arguing that the classification system had outlived its useful purpose.
CARPHA is the sole regional public health agency and pledges to continue to work with its Member States to ensure that the Caribbean is capable of preventing, detecting and responding to public health threats affecting the Region.
Number of ZIKA confirmations from CARPHA, USCDC, ECDC and PHAC laboratories. 2016 – 2018