News in brief


The disconnection of telephone service at some health centres in St Catherine because of unpaid bills, is seriously affecting patient care in the parish.

That’s the word from Acting Chief Public Health Inspector, Frank

He told last week’s monthly meeting of the St. Catherine Parish Council, that the Greater Portmore, Old Harbour and Linstead Health Centres have been without telephone service since April due to the non payment of bills.

Mr. Graham says the Health Ministry, which is responsible for paying the bills, is yet to react to the situation.

He’s appealing to the Parish Council for help in restoring telephone service to the facilities.


The St. Catherine Health Department has lifted the ban on home burials in Water Mount and adjoining districts.

The health authority banned home burials in November last year, after residents complained that the practice was contributing to the contamination of ground water.

Last week the Department advised the St Catherine Parish Council that the ban had been lifted with immediate effect.

This after it was advised by the Water Resources Authority, WRA, that home burials should not impact negatively on the underground bed or layer yielding ground water for wells and springs.

However, the WRA has recommended strict adherence to cemetery burial guidelines so as to prevent possible contamination of the surface water resources


Trinidad and Tobago has become the twenty-first country in the Caribbean region to report confirmed cases of the Chikungunya virus, more commonly known as Chik-V.

T-and-T’s Health Minister says the country is implementing an aggressive vector control programme in order to minimize the spread of the disease.

Chik-V, which is spread by the Aedes Aegypti mosquito, is noted by the World Health Organization as a severe and disabling disease which rarely results in death.

The WHO says most people who get sick feel better within a week, but for some victims, the joint pain may last for months or years.

Chik-V has steadily made its way around the Caribbean since December last year, with cases reported in T-and-T in the south, Antigua and Barbuda in the east and the Turks and Caicos in the north.

Only in the western part of the Caribbean where Jamaica and Cuba are found has there so far been no report of the disease.