Epidemiology and Surveillance Unit FAQs
What are the key elements of the Pandemic Flu Plan and what are the objectives of the plan if a pandemic flu arrvies here?
Viewed 1452 times since Mon, Mar 5, 2012
The key elements of the pandemic plan include:Establishing 'command and control' structure to lead and co-ordinate the response Communications Surveillance to monitor the pandemic (locally and internationally) The Public Health Response The... Read More
Have we had any cases of Chikungunya in Bermuda?
Viewed 1080 times since Tue, May 20, 2014
As of May 19 2014, we have not had any reported confirmed cases of Chikungunya in Bermuda. Read More
Why is Epidemiology and Surveillance concerned about Avian Flu?
Viewed 990 times since Mon, Mar 5, 2012
With avian influenza now infecting poultry in different areas of the world, there is greater risk for human infection and transmission. Each additional human case gives the virus an opportunity to improve its transmissibility in humans and thus devel... Read More
Why is MRSA a serious public health threat?
Viewed 828 times since Wed, Oct 2, 2013
Many lives have been saved with antibiotics. But after many years of use, and misuse, antibiotics are losing their power to fight certain infections. Some bacteria are becoming "resistant” to the medicines that are supposed to kill them. As more and ... Read More
How do people become infected with swine flu ?
Viewed 747 times since Mon, Mar 5, 2012
People usually get swine influenza from infected pigs, however, some human cases lack contact history with pigs or environments where pigs have been located. Human-to-human transmission has occurred in some instances, but was limited to close contact... Read More
Is there a human vaccine to protect against influenza A/H1N1 (previously known as ’swine flu’)?
Viewed 746 times since Mon, Mar 5, 2012
Influenza viruses change very quickly and the match between the vaccine and the circulating virus is very important to give adequate protective immunity to vaccinated people. This is why WHO needs to select vaccine viruses twice a year for seasonal i... Read More
Will a vaccine(s) be available to prevent illness in a pandemic?
Viewed 725 times since Mon, Mar 5, 2012
Vaccines can play an important role in responding to an influenza pandemic but because the virus will be entirely new and not predictable a specific vaccine cannot be made in advance. Preparatory work is being undertaken to be in the best possible po... Read More
Will Bermuda be able to obtain vaccines for its residents in a pandemic?
Viewed 721 times since Mon, Mar 5, 2012
Although Bermuda discusses its needs for vaccines with external agencies, it is very unlikely that enough vaccines can be produced and distributed for everyone to be immunized before the first wave of illness due to a pandemic influenza strain. Read More
Will other sectors of the community be affected by pandemic flu?
Viewed 708 times since Mon, Mar 5, 2012
Pandemic flu will impact on all services including police, fire, prisons, utilities, food and fuel supply, etc. All are likely to be affected due to staff shortages, disruptions in local and international transport, etc. Read More
What should I do if I have flu-like symptoms or suspect I have Bird Flu/Avian Influenza?
Viewed 706 times since Mon, Mar 5, 2012
Many people get respiratory infections every day and the probability that your symptoms are from avian influenza is extremely low. If you have just returned from Asia and you are experiencing any of the symptoms outlined above, you should seek medica... Read More
What do pandemic/flu outbreaks mean for Bermuda? Are we prepared?
Viewed 701 times since Mon, Mar 5, 2012
It is difficult to predict when the pandemic will occur. It is also difficult to predict how serious the pandemic will be. It depends on how easily the virus spreads, which age groups are affected most and the severity of the symptoms it produces. Th... Read More
What is the difference between an epidemic and a pandemic?
Viewed 696 times since Mon, Mar 5, 2012
A pandemic occurs over large geographical areas (usually worldwide) and affects a high proportion of the population. An epidemic, although also serious, usually refers to what is happening in one country or region. Read More
Does this mean that the vaccine will be rationed in a pandemic?
Viewed 696 times since Mon, Mar 5, 2012
When a vaccine is available, priority will be given to certain groups first. Healthcare workers and other essential service key workers will need to take precedence over other groups as it will be important to maintain health and other essential serv... Read More
Should residents be concerned?
Viewed 692 times since Tue, Aug 5, 2014
Residents should follow the recommended precautions.It should be noted that the current outbreak in Africa is so severe for a number of key reasons, including a lack of resources, inadequate infection-control measures, and mistrust of health workers ... Read More
How long will it take for a pandemic to spread to Bermuda?
Viewed 687 times since Mon, Mar 5, 2012
Once the pandemic emerges in another part of the world, it will probably take less than six months and possibly just a few weeks to reach Bermuda. The increasing speed and volume of modern air travel means that, infectious diseases can travel very ra... Read More
What drugs are available for treatment for influenza A/H1N1 (previously known as ’swine flu’)?
Viewed 678 times since Mon, Mar 5, 2012
Persons diagnosed with the flu shouldstay homeand follow a health care provider's recommendations. Flu symptoms can be treated with and without medication. Over-the-counter medications may relieve someflu symptoms,but will not make you the infec... Read More
What should I do if I become ill after travelling to a country where there are cases of Ebola Virus?
Viewed 668 times since Tue, Aug 5, 2014
· Sick travelers should delay travel until cleared to travel by a doctor or public health authority.· Seek medical care immediately if you develop fever, ... Read More
If the pandemic influenza arrives in Bermuda how can I protect myself and my family from catching it?
Viewed 666 times since Mon, Mar 5, 2012
The influenza virus is spread through the air when people cough or sneeze. There are some basic measures that you and your family can take to reduce the risk of infection:Cover your mouth and nose when coughing or sneezing, using a tissue whenever po... Read More
What would Bermuda do if pandemic flu arrives?
Viewed 663 times since Mon, Mar 5, 2012
If the pandemic starts outside Bermuda, the government would have already put its plan into action and started preparing Bermuda for the pandemic. A graduated series of public health measures would be implemented to reduce the impact and help control... Read More
Which countries have been affected by outbreaks in pigs?
Viewed 659 times since Mon, Mar 5, 2012
Swine influenza is not notifiable to international animal health authorities (OIE, www.oie.int ), therefore its international distribution in animals is not well known. The disease is considered endemic, in the United States. Outbreaks in pigs are al... Read More
Will a pandemic arrive in winter like normal flu?
Viewed 657 times since Mon, Mar 5, 2012
Not necessarily. A new virus may not follow the usual seasonal pattern of flu. It could occur any time of year. Read More
Can antiviral agents be used in the event of a pandemic?
Viewed 653 times since Mon, Mar 5, 2012
Antiviral agents can be used to prevent and/or treat influenza but again, until the virus starts circulating, it is not possible to know how effective the antivirals will be or the best way to use them. Proper use of antivirals is important especiall... Read More
How will a new virus/viruses be detected?
Viewed 648 times since Mon, Mar 5, 2012
Scientists in an international network of laboratories, coordinated by the World Health Organization (WHO) are continuously compiling global surveillances of newly and/or recurring viruses. This network provides a mechanism for monitoring flu viruses... Read More
Will schools be affected in a pandemic?
Viewed 648 times since Mon, Mar 5, 2012
Pandemic flu is likely to spread rapidly in schools, so they may have to close. Some may have to close for short periods of time because of staff shortages. This, in turn, will affect working parents who may need to stay at home to care for their chi... Read More
How is Ebola diagnosed?
Viewed 648 times since Tue, Aug 5, 2014
Diagnosing Ebola in an individual who has been infected for only a few days is difficult, because the early symptoms are not specific to Ebolavirus infection and are seen often in patients with more commonly occurring diseases. However, if a person h... Read More
How can I protect myself from getting swine influenza from infected people?
Viewed 645 times since Mon, Mar 5, 2012
Infected persons should be kept away from other people as much as possible, especially those who are at high risk of complicationfrom the flu. Healthy persons should clean their hands with soap and water or an alcohol-based hand rub frequently, but e... Read More
Is it safe to eat poultry and poultry products?
Viewed 641 times since Mon, Mar 5, 2012
Yes, providing they are properly cooked. Avian influenza is not transmitted through properly cooked food, as the H5N1 virus is sensitive to heat. Normal cooking temperatures will kill the virus. Consumers should be sure that all parts of the poultry ... Read More
What is swine influenza?
Viewed 639 times since Mon, Mar 5, 2012
Swine influenza, or 'swine flu', is a highly contagious acute respiratory disease of pigs, caused by one of several swine influenza A viruses. Morbidity tends to be high and mortality low (1-4%). The virus is spread among pigs by aerosols a... Read More
How do people become infected with bird flu/avian influenza?
Viewed 638 times since Mon, Mar 5, 2012
Direct contact with infected poultry or surfaces and objects contaminated by their feces is presently considered the main route of human infection. Read More
Will antiviral agents be recommended for all groups of the population in a pandemic?
Viewed 635 times since Mon, Mar 5, 2012
During a pandemic, antivirals will have to be used in the most effective way, taking into account emerging evidence about the pandemic and the effectiveness of the drugs, any side effects or complications, and their availability. Some groups of peopl... Read More
Does the bird flu virus spread easily from birds to humans?
Viewed 634 times since Mon, Mar 5, 2012
No. Although more than 100 human cases of "bird flu" have occurred, this is a small number compared with the huge number of birds affected and the numerous opportunities for human exposure. Read More
When is the next pandemic due?
Viewed 633 times since Mon, Mar 5, 2012
We do not know. It cannot be predicted. The time periods between previous pandemics have varied widely (11 to 42 years), with no recognizable pattern. Read More
What is Bird Flu?
Viewed 633 times since Mon, Mar 5, 2012
Avian influenza or 'bird flu' is a contagious disease of animals caused by viruses that normally infect only birds. Through close contact with infected poultry, humans may become infected. Read More
How can I prepare for an outbreak of pandemic influenza?
Viewed 629 times since Mon, Mar 5, 2012
When the threat of a pandemic spreading to Bermuda is high, you will be alerted. At that time you should consider that usual services may be disrupted. These could include services provided by stores, restaurants etc. You may wish to store a 3-week s... Read More
How will we know when a pandemic is about to happen?
Viewed 627 times since Mon, Mar 5, 2012
A pandemic is possible when a new strain of influenza has not only been identified but also causes illness and has started spreading from one person to another in more than one country. Read More
Does Bermuda have stockpiles of antiviral agents for use in a pandemic?
Viewed 627 times since Mon, Mar 5, 2012
Bermuda is discussing its needs for antiviral agents with external agencies. Read More
What are the symptoms of pandemic Flu?
Viewed 625 times since Mon, Mar 5, 2012
Symptoms are similar to, but may be more severe than, symptoms for seasonal flu sudden onset of fever, cough, headache, extreme tiredness and aching muscles, and respiratory symptoms such as sore throat. Read More
Is there a vaccine to prevent pandemic flu?
Viewed 623 times since Mon, Mar 5, 2012
Influenza vaccines or flu shots have to be made specifically for the particular flu virus causing the epidemic or pandemic. These vaccines take several months to produce. Pandemic specific vaccines are unlikely to be available at the beginning of any... Read More
What should I do if I am in regular contact with pigs?
Viewed 622 times since Mon, Mar 5, 2012
It is always advisable to minimize contact with sick pigs and report such animals to the relevant animal health authorities. Most people are infected through prolonged, close contact with infected pigs. Good hygiene practices are essential in all con... Read More
What do I do if I come across a dead bird in my yard?
Viewed 622 times since Mon, Mar 5, 2012
It is recommended that persons observe wild birds from a distance. If you encounter a diseased or dead bird, contact the Department of Conservation Services. Dead birds may be placed in a plastic bag for disposal. This should be done without direct h... Read More
Are local authorities monitoring the Ebola outbreak?
Viewed 617 times since Tue, Aug 5, 2014
The Epidemiology and Surveillance Unit in the Ministry of Health, Seniors and Environment regularly monitors communicable diseases and syndromes that may impact on our community.This is done:• locally through reports fro... Read More
Should I avoid travel to nations affected by bird flu?
Viewed 616 times since Mon, Mar 5, 2012
Currently, there are no travel restrictions in place pertaining to countries affected by outbreaks of bird flu. However, there are travel advisories which state that persons visiting affected countries avoid poultry farms, as well as contact with ani... Read More
Can a pandemic be prevented at this stage?
Viewed 615 times since Mon, Mar 5, 2012
International efforts will be put into trying to control a pandemic at this early stage. However, influenza is highly infectious and because whole populations will be susceptible to the new virus, despite people's best effort it is likely to con... Read More
How will a pandemic impact health services?
Viewed 610 times since Mon, Mar 5, 2012
A flu pandemic will place a considerable amount of pressure on health and social services, due to the greatly increased number of persons with influenza who will require treatment. This might also be coupled with depletion of workforce, due to indivi... Read More
How are pandemics different form seasonal flu outbreaks?
Viewed 609 times since Mon, Mar 5, 2012
While the symptoms of pandemic influenza are similar to those of seasonal flu, they may be more severe and many more people would be affected. Also, pandemics do not follow the seasonal pattern of influenza and may occur in waves of activity, each la... Read More
Is another pandemic of influenza likely?
Viewed 607 times since Mon, Mar 5, 2012
Flu viruses are constantly changing and adapting, so it is likely that viruses sufficiently different from circulating strains will emerge from time to time. There were four in the last century. The most serious pandemic was in 1918, killing millions... Read More
Are there any other countermeasures available in a pandemic?
Viewed 607 times since Mon, Mar 5, 2012
Since vaccines and antiviral drugs are likely to be in limited supply, especially at the onset of a pandemic, other public health and social interventions may be the only available countermeasures to limit or slow the spread of the pandemic virus. Me... Read More
How will I know if pandemic influenza has arrived in Bermuda?
Viewed 605 times since Mon, Mar 5, 2012
The World Health Organization has an international system in place to detect pandemic influenza. The Department of Health also has a system in place to monitor influenza locally and worldwide. Following alerts from the World Health Organization and t... Read More
Where can I get more information on the benefits and harms of influenza specific antivirals?
Viewed 604 times since Mon, Mar 5, 2012
For more information on influenza-specific antivirals, see http://www.cdc.gov/flu/antivirals/whatyoushould.htm. Read More
What is a Pandemic Influenza?
Viewed 602 times since Mon, Mar 5, 2012
Influenza viruses are constantly changing and producing new strains. These changes result in the seasonal epidemics or outbreaks of influenza seen each year. Sometimes these changes can be major, resulting in a flu virus that is so different from pre... Read More
What are the symptoms of Bird Flu/Avian Influenza in people?
Viewed 601 times since Mon, Mar 5, 2012
The symptoms are similar to that of other forms of influenza, including: fever, sore throat, cough, headache and muscle aches & pains. Read More
What is the Epidemiology and Surveillance Unit contact information?
Viewed 597 times since Tue, Mar 6, 2012
The Epidemiology and Surveillance Unit can be contacted by Phone: 441-278-4904 or email email@example.com. Read More
Is it safe to eat pork and pork products?
Viewed 596 times since Mon, Mar 5, 2012
Yes. Swine influenza has not been shown to be transmissible to people through eating properly handled and prepared pork (pig meat) or other products derived from pigs. The swine influenza virus is killed by cooking temperatures of 160oF / 70oC, corre... Read More
What are the implications of swine flu for human health?
Viewed 595 times since Mon, Mar 5, 2012
Outbreaks and sporadic human infection with swine influenza, have been occasionally reported worldwide. Generally, clinical symptoms are similar to seasonal influenza but reported clinical presentation, ranges broadly from asymptomatic infection to s... Read More
How predictable will the effects of a pandemic be?
Viewed 590 times since Mon, Mar 5, 2012
Every pandemic is different so, we cannot be sure how a new pandemic will behave. Predictions are made based on information from past pandemics. Read More
How will a pandemic impact businesses?
Viewed 588 times since Mon, Mar 5, 2012
Businesses may be impacted by the depletion of the workforce due to illness. Absences may be compounded by the need for some workers to care for family members. Businesses may also be impacted by disruptions to availability of resources and supplies. Read More
Are there medications to treat pandemic flu?
Viewed 587 times since Mon, Mar 5, 2012
Alltypes of flu have similar symptoms. Although the flu and common cold have similar symptoms, the flu tends to be more severe. Flu symptoms include a 100oF or higher fever or feeling feverish (not everyone with the flu has a fever), a cough and/or s... Read More
What can travelers do to prevent polio?
Viewed 582 times since Tue, Jul 1, 2014
· Get the polio vaccine: Ask your doctor or nurse to find out if you are up-to-date with your routine immunizations including polio vaccination and whether you need a booster dose before traveling. Make... Read More
What can we expect to happen in a pandemic?
Viewed 579 times since Mon, Mar 5, 2012
Once the pandemic reaches Bermuda it may cause widespread illness across the country, over a period of 1-2 months. There may be a second wave of illness a few weeks or months later. Previous experience suggests around a quarter of the population will... Read More
What is the “STEPS to a Well Bermuda” survey and what is it for?
Viewed 572 times since Tue, Nov 12, 2013
The STEPS to a Well Bermuda survey is designed to assess the prevalence of chronic disease risk factors within Bermuda's population. Using the data from the survey, evidence-based policies and interventions may be created to reduce the burden of... Read More
I haven’t heard anything about the STEPS to a Well Bermuda survey. Were people informed about it?
Viewed 568 times since Tue, Nov 12, 2013
Yes, information was mailed to your house weeks before the launch of the survey advising you that someone will be visiting your home. Also, the survey has been publicized with a press release in October, newspaper ads, radio interviews and promotiona... Read More
Is there a difference in a disease caused by a VDPV and one caused by wild poliovirus or OPV?
Viewed 564 times since Tue, Jul 1, 2014
No, there is no clinical difference between paralytic polio caused by wild poliovirus, OPV, or VDPV. Read More
How can I protect myself from Chikungunya?
Viewed 563 times since Tue, May 20, 2014
There is no vaccine or medication to prevent chikungunya virus infection or disease. It is advised to: Reduce mosquito exposureUse air conditioning (mosquitoes do not like cold temperatures) or window/door screens Use mosquito repellents on expo... Read More
What are the hours of operation of the Epidemiology and Surveillance Unit?
Viewed 544 times since Tue, Mar 6, 2012
The Epidemiology and Surveillance Unit hours are Monday to Friday, 8:45 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Read More
Is there a cost for services from the Epidemiology and Surveillance Unit?
Viewed 540 times since Tue, Mar 6, 2012
There are no costs for services offered by the Epidemiology and Surveillance Unit. Read More
What services do the Epidemiology and Surveillance Unit offer?
Viewed 538 times since Tue, Mar 6, 2012
The Epidemiology and Surveillance Unit ensures surveillance and investigation of communicable and non-communicable diseases and follows up outbreaks, such as food and waterborne diseases. It is responsible for the routine collection, analysis, interp... Read More
How long can I expect to have symptoms if I have Chikungunya?
Viewed 535 times since Tue, May 20, 2014
Most people feel better within a week. Some people may develop longer-term joint pain. People at increased risk for severe disease include newborns exposed during delivery, older adults (65 and older), and people with medical conditions such as... Read More
What is the difference between colonization and infection?
Viewed 532 times since Wed, Oct 2, 2013
Colonization means that MRSA is present on or in the body without causing an illness. Infection means that MRSA is making the person sick. Read More
What if my test results for the STEPS survey are abnormal?
Viewed 529 times since Tue, Nov 12, 2013
You will be given information on the normal limits of tests performed. We encourage you to follow up with your health care provider if you are concerned about any results, particularly if they are in the higher limits of normal. Read More
How long can it take for MRSA symptoms to appear?
Viewed 524 times since Mon, Oct 14, 2013
When a person becomes infected with MRSA (methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus), the bacteria begin to multiply within the affected area. A person will not have any signs or symptoms during this time. After 1 to 10 days, on average, signs and/... Read More
Will I receive feedback from the STEPS survey?
Viewed 523 times since Tue, Nov 12, 2013
After your physical and biochemical assessments, you will recieve a Participant Feedback Form which you can take with you on your next visit to your health care provider to discuss. Read More
Where is the Epidemiology and Surveillance Unit located (physical address)?
Viewed 519 times since Tue, Mar 6, 2012
The Epidemiology and Surveillance Unit is located in the: Office of the Chief Medical OfficerContinental Building25 Church StreetHamilton, HM 12Telephone: 441-278-4904 Read More
How will I remember what I have to do for the STEPS survey?
Viewed 517 times since Tue, Nov 12, 2013
You will be given written information and instructions throughout the process. If you have any questions please email STEPS@gov.bm. We will also leave a contact number with you. Read More
Is the Epidemiology and Surveillance Unit wheelchair accessible?
Viewed 506 times since Tue, Mar 6, 2012
Yes, there is a ramp at entrance of the building to the Epidemiology and Surveillance Unit, and elevator access to all floors. Read More
Is it safe to be in the same room as a person with MRSA?
Viewed 492 times since Wed, Oct 2, 2013
Healthy people are at very little risk of becoming infected with MRSA. Family members or visitors who are ill, or who have a weak immune system should limit their physical contact with a person who has MRSA to no more than casual contact. However, al... Read More
Hand, Foot and Mouth Disease Fact Sheet
Viewed 474 times since Tue, Feb 4, 2014
When a person with MRSA is being cared for at home, what precautions should be taken?
Viewed 467 times since Wed, Oct 2, 2013
Wash your hands well using an antibacterial soap after caring for the person with MRSA.Periodically clean the person's room and personal items with a commercial disinfectant or a fresh solution of one (1) part bleach and one hundred (100) parts ... Read More
Can my children get MRSA by being around a person with MRSA?
Viewed 460 times since Wed, Oct 2, 2013
Healthy people, including children, are at very little risk of becoming infected with MRSA providing proper precautions ( including hand washing) are followed. Read More
How is Ebola spread?
Viewed 458 times since Tue, Aug 5, 2014
Ebola is introduced into the human population through close contact with the blood, secretions, organs or other bodily fluids of infected animals. Ebola then spreads in the community through human-to-human transmission, with infection resulting... Read More
When is a person with Staph or MRSA contagious?
Viewed 453 times since Wed, Oct 2, 2013
A person most contagious when infected wounds are open or have liquid drainage coming from them. Read More
Can I get a staph or MRSA infection at my gym/health club?
Viewed 450 times since Wed, Oct 2, 2013
Although MRSA is mainly spread from person to person by direct skin contact, it is possible to come in contact with the bacteria by using shared gym equipment. To protect yourself from infections in the gym:• Cover cuts, scratches or scrapes with a c... Read More
Are certain people at higher risk of getting MRSA skin infections?
Viewed 448 times since Wed, Oct 2, 2013
Certain people are at higher risk of developing MRSA skin infections, including:• Hospital patients- MRSA infection usually develops in hospital patients who are elderly, very ill, or who may have an open wound, or a tube (urinary catheter) going int... Read More
Who is most at risk of polio?
Viewed 448 times since Tue, Jul 1, 2014
Children under five years of age are most at risk for polio. Travelers going to places where polio is reported may be at risk for polio. Read More
What is a vaccine-derived poliovirus (VDPV) ?
Viewed 448 times since Tue, Jul 1, 2014
A vaccine-derived poliovirus (VDPV) is a strain of poliovirus that changed over time in response to polio eradication and low immunization coverage. Oral polio Type 2 strain is commonly associated with vaccine-derived poliovirus and behaves... Read More
How can I prevent staph or MRSA infections?
Viewed 446 times since Wed, Oct 2, 2013
• Keep your hands clean by washing thoroughly with soap and water or using an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.• Keep cuts and scrapes clean and covered with a bandage until healed.• Avoid contact with other people's wounds or bandages.• Don't ... Read More
Why are there questions such as age, sex, education, etc. in the STEPS survey?
Viewed 442 times since Tue, Nov 12, 2013
These demographic characteristics help us to determine how representative the sample is of Bermuda's total population. Secondly, it allows users of the information to see how the results vary for different groups or segments of the population. Read More
How is Chikungunya treated?
Viewed 437 times since Tue, May 20, 2014
No medication is currently available to cure the infection; only symptomatic treatment is available. Read More
What is MRSA?
Viewed 435 times since Wed, Oct 2, 2013
MRSA are staph bacteria that have become resistant to certain antibiotics, making them more difficult to treat. Read More
Is it possible that my staph or MRSA skin infection will come back after it is treated?
Viewed 433 times since Wed, Oct 2, 2013
It is possible to have a staph or MRSA skin infection come back after it is treated. To prevent this from happening, follow your healthcare provider's directions while you have the infection and follow the prevention steps after the infection is... Read More
Who gets MRSA skin infections?
Viewed 431 times since Wed, Oct 2, 2013
Anyone can get a MRSA skin infection. Even healthy people with healthy skin can become infected. Read More
What should I do if I suspect that I have Chikungunya?
Viewed 431 times since Tue, May 20, 2014
If you experience the symptoms of chikungunya, please see a doctor who can make the correct diagnosis. Protect yourself against further mosquito bites, if you do have Chikungunya, this will help prevent the virus from spreading to others in your comm... Read More
I live here alone. Should I also be in the STEPS survey?
Viewed 429 times since Tue, Nov 12, 2013
Yes, single-person households are an important part of the Bermuda society. If households like yours were excluded from the survey, then it would not be representative of Bermuda's make-up and the results would be biased in favor of all other ty... Read More
What should I do if I think I have a staph or MRSA infection? What can I do to prevent others from getting infected?
Viewed 427 times since Wed, Oct 2, 2013
See your healthcare provider as soon as possible. They will tell you how you can best protect yourself and others from this infection. Take the following steps to prevent the spread of antibiotic-resistant staph skin infections to others:• Cover skin... Read More
What is Staphylococcus aureus?
Viewed 424 times since Wed, Oct 2, 2013
Staphylococcus aureus belongs to a group of bacteria known as "staph.” Staph bacteria are one of the most frequent causes of skin infections in the U.S. These skin infections are minor most of the time, but staph can also cause serious infections. Th... Read More
Is the information I provide for STEPS confidential?
Viewed 424 times since Tue, Nov 12, 2013
The survey is confidential. Your name and personal information will not be used, only the data collected. The interviewers have been trained to conduct the interview in a private, professional and confidential manner. Read More
What are antibiotics?
Viewed 422 times since Wed, Oct 2, 2013
Antibiotics are powerful medicines that are used to treat infections that are caused by bacteria. There are many different types of antibiotics. Each type of antibiotic is designed to kill specific bacteria. Antibiotics are not effective in treating ... Read More
Where is MRSA found?
Viewed 420 times since Wed, Oct 2, 2013
MRSA can be found on the skin, in the nose, and in blood and urine. Read More
What is Ebola?
Viewed 420 times since Tue, Aug 5, 2014
Ebola virus disease (EVD), formerly known as Ebola hemorrhagic fever is a severe, often fatal disease in humans.When infection occurs, symptoms usually begin abruptly. Read More
MRSA in Schools Fact Sheet (Download)
Viewed 419 times since Wed, Oct 2, 2013
Who should get polio vaccine and when?
Viewed 418 times since Tue, Jul 1, 2014
IPV is routinely given to infants beginning at 2 months of age as a combination vaccine. Children get 5 doses at these ages: 2 months, 4 months, 6 months, and boosters at 18 months and 5 years. Parents / guardians are encouraged to follow the B... Read More
What is Acute Flaccid Paralysis (AFP) Surveillance
Viewed 418 times since Tue, Jul 1, 2014
Acute flaccid (floppy) paralysis is defined as any case of new onset of hypotonic weakness in a child aged less than 15 years of age. In the early stages of the disease, polio may be difficult to differentiate from other forms of AFP. Therefore, to i... Read More
How is MRSA spread?
Viewed 416 times since Wed, Oct 2, 2013
Staph bacteria, including MRSA, are almost always spread by direct physical contact. Staph bacteria are not spread through the air. The bacteria can also spread when people come into contact with objects that have been contaminated with the bacteria.... Read More
What is the incubation period of Ebola?
Viewed 416 times since Tue, Aug 5, 2014
Symptoms may appear anywhere from 2 to 21 days after exposure to Ebola virus, though 8-10 days is most common. Read More
Should I be concerned if there is a case of VDPV in Bermuda?
Viewed 415 times since Tue, Jul 1, 2014
VDPVs can cause outbreaks in countries where vaccine coverage with OPV is low. Because OPV has not been used in Bermuda since the early 2000s and vaccine coverage with IPV is high, it is unlikely that any vaccine-derived poliovirus (VDPV) would becom... Read More
Are there any vaccines to prevent the Ebola virus?
Viewed 407 times since Tue, Aug 5, 2014
Presently there are no FDA approved vaccines to prevent Ebola Virus. Several vaccines are being tested, but none are available for clinical use. Read More
What benefit is it to me if I participate in STEPS to a Well Bermuda?
Viewed 406 times since Tue, Nov 12, 2013
You will recieve a health screening at no cost. Also, you will be contributing to the safeguarding of well Bermuda for the future. Read More
What type of treatment and care should be given?
Viewed 404 times since Tue, Aug 5, 2014
Standard treatment for Ebola is still limited to supportive therapy and to help relieve symptoms.This consists of: • balancing the patient’s fluids and electrolytes • maintaining their... Read More
Does MERS-CoV spread form person to person?
Viewed 403 times since Thu, May 15, 2014
MERS-CoV has been shown to spread between people who are in close contact. Transmission form infected patients to healthcare personnel has also been observed. Clusters of cases in several countries are being investigated. Read More
How is Ebola transmission prevented?
Viewed 402 times since Tue, Aug 5, 2014
It is not always possible to identify patients with Ebola early because initial symptoms may be non-specific. For this reason, health-care workers apply standard precautions consistently with all patients – regardless of their diagnosis.When cases of... Read More
Am I at risk for exposure to Ebola Virus?
Viewed 401 times since Tue, Aug 5, 2014
Currently, all cases of acquired illness or death have occurred in the African countries of:Guinea Read More
Do I have to participate in the STEPS to a Well Bermuda survey?
Viewed 395 times since Tue, Nov 12, 2013
There is no legal obligation for you to participate in the STEPS survey. However, you may see how important the information collected will be for analyzing the impact of chronic disease risk factors in our community and creating new policy for chroni... Read More
What are the symptoms of Chikungunya?
Viewed 390 times since Tue, May 20, 2014
Symptoms usually begin 3-7 days after being bitten by an infected mosquito. The most common symptoms are fewer and severe joint pains, often in the hands and feet. Other symptoms may include headache, muscle pain, joint swelling, or rash. Read More
How was I selected to participate in the STEPS to a Well Bermuda survey?
Viewed 389 times since Tue, Nov 12, 2013
After your house was randomly selected, we enter the demographics of eligible people living in the household into a device. The device applies a method to randomly select one person to participate. Read More
Is polio still a disease seen in other countries around the world?
Viewed 389 times since Tue, Jul 1, 2014
Currently there are ten (10) countries infected with wild poliovirus. These are:· Pakistan Read More
Can MRSA skin infections be treated?
Viewed 388 times since Wed, Oct 2, 2013
Many staph skin infections, including those caused by MRSA, can be treated by draining the abscess or boil. Many of these infections do not need to be treated with antibiotics. Drainage of skin boils or abscesses should only be done by a healthcare p... Read More
How long will the STEPS survey take?
Viewed 380 times since Tue, Nov 12, 2013
There are 4 steps in the survey process. STEPS 1 and 2 should take approximately an hour to complete. It can take longer if there are unforseen interruptions that you may have to attend to or how much detailed information you provide. If you cannot c... Read More
What should travelers do to prevent acquiring Ebola?
Viewed 380 times since Tue, Aug 5, 2014
Avoid nonessential travel to locations where an outbreak of Ebola is occurring. If you must travel, please make sure to do the following: • Practice careful hygiene. Avoid contact with blood and body fluids.• ... Read More
How was my household selected to participate in the STEPS to a Well Bermuda survey?
Viewed 379 times since Tue, Nov 12, 2013
The Department of Statistics randomly selected your household. It is like a game of chance, bingo for instance. All the households in this area had an equal chance of being selected; it just happened that your "number” was one of those that were draw... Read More
Who is included in the STEPS to a Well Bermuda survey?
Viewed 378 times since Tue, Nov 12, 2013
Approximately 2700 households from across Bermuda have been selected to participate in the STEPS Survey. Read More
How do humans become infected by Chikungunya?
Viewed 374 times since Tue, May 20, 2014
The virus is spread mainly by the bites of infected Aedes mosquitoes. These mosquito types are characterized by white stripes on their black bodies and legs. These mosquitoes bite mostly during the daytime. Read More
How is polio spread?
Viewed 368 times since Tue, Jul 1, 2014
Polio is transmitted mainly through fecal and oral routes. It is mostly spread through person-to-person contact through secretions from the nose and mouth of an infected person. The virus may also enter the body through the mouth when people eat or d... Read More
Are there any cases of MERS-CoV in Bermuda?
Viewed 367 times since Fri, May 16, 2014
As of May 15 2014, there have been no reported cases of MERS-CoV in Bermuda. Read More
What is the prognosis of someone diagnosed with Ebola?
Viewed 363 times since Tue, Aug 5, 2014
Some persons infected with Ebola are able to recover, while others do not. The reasons behind this are not yet fully understood. However, it is known that patients who die usually have not developed a significant immune response to the viru... Read More
Is there a vaccine for MERS-CoV?
Viewed 355 times since Fri, May 16, 2014
No, but the CDC is discussing with partners the possibility of developing one. Read More
How can I help protect myself from the MERS-CoV infection?
Viewed 350 times since Fri, May 16, 2014
CDC advises that people follow these tips to help prevent respiratory illnesses:Wash your hands often with soap and water for 20 seconds, and help young children do the same. If soap and water are not available, us an alcohol-based hand sanitiz... Read More
Have we had any cases of polio in Bermuda?
Viewed 349 times since Tue, Jul 1, 2014
There have not been any confirmed cases of poliomyelitis in Bermuda since before 1979. Read More
What are the signs and symptoms of Ebola?
Viewed 349 times since Tue, Aug 5, 2014
EVD is a severe acute viral illness often characterized by the sudden onset of the following:• Fever • Intense weakness • Muscle pain • &... Read More
What are the treatments for MERS-CoV?
Viewed 347 times since Fri, May 16, 2014
There are no specific treatments recommended for illnesses caused by MERS-CoV. Medical care is supportive and help to relieve symptoms. Read More
What is MERS-CoV?
Viewed 341 times since Thu, May 15, 2014
Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) is a viral respiratory illness. MERS is caused by a coronavirus called "Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus" (MERS-CoV). it is different from other coronaviruses that have been found in people before. Read More
Can I still travel to countries in the Arabian Peninsula or neighboring countries where MERS cases have occurred?
Viewed 341 times since Thu, May 15, 2014
Yes. CDC does not recommend that anyone change their travel plans because of MERS. The CDC travel notice which porvides special precautions for travelers. Because spread of MERS has occurred in health care settings, the alert advises travelers going ... Read More
What are the symptoms of MERS-CoV?
Viewed 337 times since Thu, May 15, 2014
Most people who got infected with MERS-CoV developed severe acute respiratory illness with symptoms of fever, cough, and shortness of breath. Some people were reported as having a mild respiratory illness. Read More
Am I at risk for MERS-CoV infection?
Viewed 335 times since Thu, May 15, 2014
The U.S. cases of MERS represent a very low risk to the general public. You are not considered to be at risk fro MERS-CoV infection if you have not had close contact, such as caring for or living with someone who is being evaluated for MERS-CoV... Read More
What if I recently traveled to countries in the Arabian Penisula or neighboring countries and got sick?
Viewed 333 times since Thu, May 15, 2014
If you develop a fever amd symptoms of respiratory illness, such as cough or shortness of breath, within 14 days after traveling from countries in the Arabian Penisula or neighboring countries, you should see your healthcare provider and mention your... Read More
What is the incubation period of polio?
Viewed 332 times since Tue, Jul 1, 2014
The incubation period of polio is 3-35 days. Read More
What is polio?
Viewed 328 times since Tue, Jul 1, 2014
Polio is an infectious disease caused by a virus that lives in the throat and intestinal tract. There are 3 different strains of the virus known as type 1, 2 and 3. Read More
What kind of polio vaccines are used in Bermuda?
Viewed 324 times since Tue, Jul 1, 2014
Inactivated poliovirus vaccine (IPV), which is given as an injection in the leg or arm, depending on age, has been used in Bermuda since 1997. Live oral (by mouth) poliovirus vaccine (OPV) is not used in Bermuda, but is still used in many low and mid... Read More
How can polio be prevented?
Viewed 322 times since Tue, Jul 1, 2014
There is no cure for polio, it can only be prevented through vaccination. There are two main types of vaccines used to prevent polio globally. They are: oral polio vaccine (OPV) given by mouth and/or inactivated polio vaccine (IPV) given by injection... Read More
What are the symptoms of polio?
Viewed 308 times since Tue, Jul 1, 2014
Most people with polio do not feel sick. Up to about 72% of persons infected with polio have no symptoms. However, infected persons without symptoms can still spread the virus and cause others to develop polio. About 24% of infected persons have mino... Read More