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The British Virgin Islands (BVI) are a British overseas territory, part of the British West Indies, lying about 60 miles east of Puerto Rico. There are about 50 islands in the BVI, many of which are uninhabited. Tortola is the main island, other islands include Virgin Gorda, Jost Van Dyke and Anegada. Tourist facilities are widely available. Don’t forget to come into our offices and get your Typhoid, and other vaccines up to date!
The stresses of the high-altitude environment include cold, low humidity, increased ultraviolet (UV) radiation, and decreased air pressure, all of which can cause problems for travelers. The greatest concern, however, is hypoxia. At 10,000 ft (3,000 m), for example, the inspired PO2 is only 69% of sea-level value. The degree of hypoxic stress depends upon altitude, rate of ascent, and duration of exposure. Sleeping at high altitude produces the greatest hypoxia; day trips to high altitude with return to low altitude are much less stressful on the body.
The human body adjusts very well to moderate hypoxia, but requires time to do so. The process of acute acclimatization to high altitude takes 3–5 days; therefore, acclimatizing for a few days at 8,000–9,000 ft before proceeding to higher altitude is ideal. Acclimatization prevents altitude illness, improves sleep, and increases comfort and well-being, although exercise performance will always be reduced compared with low altitude. Increase in ventilation is the most important factor in acute acclimatization; therefore, respiratory depressants must be avoided. Increased red-cell production does not play a role in acute acclimatization.
Inadequate acclimatization may lead to altitude illness in any traveler going to 8,000 ft (2,500 m) or higher. Susceptibility and resistance to altitude illness are genetic traits, and no screening tests are available to predict risk. Risk is not affected by training or physical fitness. Children are equally susceptible as adults; persons >50 years of age have slightly lower risk. How a traveler has responded to high altitude previously is the most reliable guide for future trips but is not infallible. However, given certain baseline susceptibility, risk is greatly influenced by rate of ascent and exertion.
Determining an itinerary that will avoid any occurrence of altitude illness is difficult because of variations in individual susceptibility, as well as in starting points and terrain. Itineraries with a high risk for altitude illness include flying directly to >9,000 ft or rapid hiking ascents, such as climbing Mt. Kilimanjaro. It is best to average no more than 1,000 ft (300 m) ft per day in altitude gain above 12,000 ft (3,660 m).
Examples of high-altitude cities with airports are Cuzco, Peru (11,000 ft; 3,326 m); La Paz, Bolivia (12,000 ft; 3,660 m); and Lhasa, Tibet (12,500 ft; 3,810 m). Travelers flying into these locations may require a period of acclimatization before proceeding higher, and drug prophylaxis may be indicated.
The following are helpful tips for people traveling to high altitude destinations.
Like many countries in Africa, Uganda had struggled with deadly civil wars, economic catastrophies, and other atrocities that have crippled most of the continent’s development.
Like some countries in Africa, Uganda has overcome these obstacles.
Like few other countries in Africa, Uganda is fighting back.
Fighting what exactly?
The number one killer disease.
Surprisingly, it’s not AIDS.
Besides yummy coffee beans, Uganda is home to one of the highest rates of Malaria in the entire planet. However, instead of letting the status quo define it, Uganda has decided to combat the disease in effort to prevent the deaths of x millions of people. The following statistics were provided by the Ministry of Health:
-Malaria is the number one killer in the world, with 3-5 million people dying of the disease annually.
-Children and pregnant women are at the highest risk of Malaria infection and mortality.
-Malaria accounted for one million deaths among children in developing countries.
-It is estimated that an African child dies every 30 seconds due to Malaria.
And Malaria isn’t only killing countless people in Uganda—it is also killing Uganda’s economy. Some 3% of Uganda’s GDP is lost to damaged crops caused by Malaria. Furthermore, according to the BBC, the modernization of Uganda’s Agriculture sector is not possible without stopping the rampant Malaria activity.
It’s clear why this problem would need to be combated. Hard, quickly, and without hesitation.
Yet Uganda’s selected method has many, including Ugandans, saying:
DDT is a pesticide that was used widely throughout developed nations up until it was learned that it was responsible for wiping out a lot of wildlife and is believed to be a reproductive hazard to both men and women. Since then, its use has been banned in most of the world.
Except in Africa, of course.
Apparently DDT is a very effective tool to have in your arsenal when fighting against Malaria. It does a good job of killing the mosquitos that transport the Malaria. A real good job. So much that the US actually said DDT is “safe” if used properly. So, Uganda takes this wise advice and decides to adopt this banned-by-the-world-product as its main anti-Malaria weapon and gets financed by, you guessed it, the US, to launch this campaign. What does this campaign actually do?
The very complex version is: DDT is sprayed on the walls inside every home so that when the mosquito lands, it is killed before or after they bite people. As long as the DDT git ‘er done, I suppose Uganda doesn’t mind losing a few more homies. But then some ask, “How can such a product, shown to have these adverse effects, be used in homes where children play and people breathe?”
It’s really simple - it’s cheap.
The head honcho in charge of the Malaria control project says it costs $1.02 to protect one person for an entire year. I suppose a few cents does add up after a while… But who’s worried about costs when millions of people, about 30-40% of them being children, are dyin’ every year from the very thing you’re fighting. Can Ugandans really complain? Would they rather have Malaria or reproductive disorders? I guess I’d rather not have kids than have kids with Malaria.
There are solutions that do not involve jeopardizing your mojo.
The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation has been working almost exclusively to represent the poor nations that are left vulnerable to Malaria. According to his experts, the keys to winning the battle against Malaria include:
1) Money spent to improve health care in Africa, especially to remote populations (this is treatable..).
2) Housing improvements will provide huge benefits (keeping those SOBs out of the house!).
3) Improving incomes help fight Malaria (they can afford health and home improvements).
4) Good public works, from local governments, help fight Malaria.
5) Education on how to avoid Malaria pays huge dividends.
6) Bednets work well, and bednets do not prevent the use of other methods.
Clearly all methods that are possible to execute. The problem is, it involves rich nations dumping cash on poor nations. There is a whole ‘nother thing involving things like Dependency Theory I could get into, but I’ll just keep it short and simple. Disease — it’s the elitists’ way to control population.
Besides, as my friend Mr. Gates will point out, Malaria isn’t the only menace facing our planet:
Clearly we have balder things to worry about… I meant bigger.
Malaria is a mosquito-borne disease caused by a parasite. People with malaria often experience fever, chills, and flu-like illness. Left untreated, they may develop severe complications and die. Each year 350-500 million cases of malaria occur worldwide, and over one million people die, most of them young children in Africa south of the Sahara.
This sometimes fatal disease can be prevented and cured. Bednets, insecticides, and antimalarial drugs are effective tools to fight malaria in areas where it is transmitted. Travelers to a malaria-risk area should avoid mosquito bites and take a preventive antimalarial drug.