26 October, 2020: The European Union has provided the Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA) with a grant of 4.1 million euro (US$4.5M) to continue supporting efforts to combat mosquito borne diseases in the Caribbean Region.
The assistance is being channelled through a four-year health strengthening programme designed to further improve the prevention, detection and control of outbreaks of mosquito borne diseases such as zika and dengue.
The project, ongoing since December 2019, will allow CARPHA to address many elements of capacity building, such as laboratory strengthening, training in integrated vector management, insecticide resistance testing and behaviour change interventions.
Alarming reports of outbreaks of dengue, some of which were associated with some deaths from territories in the region have been received and the EU remains committed to assisting the region with health security especially when these mosquito borne diseases threaten both the health of the regional population and general productivity, as well as the important tourism sector. This grant will ensure that CARPHA together with its member states can respond effectively to the potential threat that these diseases pose.
There have been reports of outbreaks in St. Vincent and the Grenadines, St. Lucia, and the French Caribbean territories of Martinique, Guadeloupe, and French Guiana. In light of current outbreaks of dengue, this is a boost to CARPHA’s support to countries at this time.
CARPHA is responsible for coordinating public health policy and responses to public health issues in CARICOM Member States and has recently completed a successful first phase of a similar EU-funded programme which focused on the Zika outbreak, at a cost of 700 000 euros (US$770,000).