Health Min: 4 viruses to blame for flu symptoms on Montserrat

November 11, 2022 in Regional

The Ministry of Health and Social Services has confirmed the presence of four respiratory viruses circulating in Montserrat and causing widespread flu symptoms among the population.

The ministry said Human Parainfluenza Virus subtype 3 (HPIV-3), Influenza A virus subtype H3N2; as well as the Rhinovirus, which causes the common cold, and COVID-19 are circulating in the population.

In a statement, the ministry said: “Health officials note that there is no cause for alarm as symptoms of the viruses are self-limiting, lasting five to seven days. However, some groups of persons are at greater risk of severe respiratory infections from these viruses, to include pneumonia and bronchitis. The most at risk are pregnant women, children under the age of five, the elderly and individuals with compromised immune symptoms.”

Residents are advised that they can treat their mild symptoms with over-the-counter medication and seek care if it becomes more severe.

Health officials expect the flu and cold season to peak between December 2022 to February 2023.

“During this period residents should pay heightened attention to maintaining their health and wellness through good nutrition and exercise. Residents should also avoid close contact with people showing signs of a cold or flu, cover the mouth and nose when coughing or sneezing and avoid touching the eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands to limit the spread of respiratory viruses,” the ministry noted.