Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : February 28th 2015 Contents A28
body & soul
Guardian www.guardian.co.tt Saturday, February 28, 2015
Better be ready
Are you ready for a
Source: The T&T Red Cross Society
Contact the Red Cross: Headquarters - 627-8215/8128, Northern branch - 627-8214, Southern branch - 652-2024, Tobago branch - 639-2781
Natural disasters can strike anytime, anywhere.
There are simple steps you can take to help
protect your family from a natural disaster.
Call your Emergency Management Office and the
Red Cross for further details.
Find out which disasters could occur in your area
and how to prepare.
Ask how you would be warned of an emergency.
Learn your communities' evacuation routes.
Ask where your nearest emergency shelters are
Ask about any special assistance for the elderly or
Ask about the plans in place at work, schools or
day care centres as well.
Create an Emergency Plan:
Meet with household members. Discuss with chil-
dren the dangers of fire, severe weather, earth-
quakes and other emergencies.
Discuss how to respond to each disaster that
Draw a floor plan of your home. Mark two escape
routes from each room. Practise an emergency
evacuation drill at least two times a year.
Learn how to turn off your water, gas and electric-
ity at the main switches.
Discuss what to do about power outages and per-
Post emergency numbers near telephones:
ODPM (Trinidad) - 640-1285/8905/8653/
800-ODPM website: odpm.gov.tt
ODPM (Tobago) - 660-7489/7686
Police - 999
Fire Services - 990
Coast Guard - 634-4440/4532/4554
Defence Force - 634-4532
Ambulance Service (EHS) - 624-4343
EMA - 628-8042
T&TEC - 625-1296/1774
TSTT - 6611
National Gas - 800-4427
Nearest health facility
Teach children how and when to call 999, Police and
Fire Services and how to make long distance calls.
Instruct household members to turn to the radio
for emergency information.
Pick one out-of-the-area-relative and one local
friend or relative for family members to call or
meet at if separated by a disaster.
Take a basic First Aid course and CPR class.
Make a list of valuables. Keep family records in a
waterproof and fireproof container.
Prepare a disaster supply list:
- Plastic sheeting and duct tape
- Canned goods, non-perishable foods and a
non-electric can opener
- Drinking water
- Any special dietary food if required
- Identification, cash, valuable papers,
insurance policies and photos
- Battery-operated radio with extra batteries
- Personal hygiene items
- Disposable utensils
- Infant-care items
- Flashlight and extra batteries
- Easy carrying container (bag) for all items.
Prepare a First Aid Kit:
- Prescription medications, betadine solu-
tion, gauze bandages, adhesive tape, sterile
pads, band aids, triangular bandages, safety
scissors, non-prescription medication, sun
screen, insect repellent, non-latex gloves,
absorbent compress 5x9 dressing, adhesive
bandages (assorted sizes), antiseptic wipes,
antibiotic ointment packets, etc.
Prepare an Emergency Car Kit:
Battery powered radio (with extra batteries),
flashlight (with extra batteries), sleeping
bags or blankets, first-aid kit and manual,
bottled water, non-perishable high energy
foods such as granola bars, raisins and
peanut butter, booster cables, a fire extin-
guisher, maps, shovel, tyre repair kit and
pump and flares.
T&T Red Cross Society
A UK study on 545 high-risk men found one case of HIV could be stopped for
every 13 men treated for a year.
YOUR DAILY HEALTH
News and Advice
Healthy gay men should be offered daily HIV
drugs to prevent infections, say campaigners.
A UK study, on 545 high-risk men, found one case
of HIV could be stopped for every 13 men treated for
The research team says it would be similar to the
pill for women and would not encourage risky sex.
The findings have been described as a "game chang-
er" and the NHS is considering how to adopt them.
Antiretroviral drugs have transformed HIV treatment
and patients have a near-normal life expectancy.
Now there is a growing body of research showing
the drugs can have a dramatic role in preventing new
Gay men face a high risk of contracting HIV. In
London, one in eight gay men has HIV while the
figure is one in 26 in the rest of the UK.
In the first year of the study, 19 people developed
HIV out of the 269 men who were not given the
There were just two cases in the 276 patients given
preventative drugs---a fall of 86 per cent.
The trial was altered as the early results were so
promising, and all participants are now getting the
Concerns had been raised that men given the drug
would adopt riskier behaviours including stopping
But the scientists found no difference in levels of
other sexually transmitted infections, such as chlamy-
"We certainly think the NHS should be considering
making this available," said one of the researchers Dr
Anthony Nardone from Public Health England.
He added: "I don t envisage all men taking PrEP
(pre-exposure prophylaxis) for all their lives, but in
effect what we re doing is giving men an option to
get through periods of very high risk in their lives."
Fellow scientist Dr Mitzy Gafos, from University
College London, said many gay men would not need
the drugs as they were not having unprotected sex.
Estimates suggest that between 5,000 and 15,000
men in the UK would be suitable.
Dr Gafos added: "There s very clearly a group of
individuals who would benefit from the availability
of this product.
"PrEP is having an important impact on removing
the inevitability of HIV for many individuals and
enhancing the sexual experience, reducing their fears
and the concerns that they go through in relation-
The study has been presented at the Conference
on Retroviruses and Opportunistic Infections in
Seattle, but the full data has not yet been published
in a medical journal.
The cost of the medicines would come to £360
per month per person. However, the National Aids
Trust said they would pay for themselves because of
the costs of treating HIV.
Chief executive Deborah Gold said: "If we can stop
people getting HIV by giving them PrEP, we have an
ethical duty to do so.
"Furthermore, over the course of their lifetime the
treatment of those 19 men will cost the NHS nearly
£7m, so the financial argument is clear, as is the
"PrEP needs to be available on the NHS as soon
as possible for all those who need it."
The Terrence Higgins Trust charity said condom
use had already prevented tens of thousands of HIV
infections since the 1980s, but argued PrEP would
be a valuable extra weapon in the armoury.
Its medical director Dr Michael Brady said: "PrEP
is, quite simply, a game-changer.
"It is not a vaccine and it won t be for everyone,
but once approved, we expect it to significantly
increase the momentum in our fight against the virus."
The NHS is already considering how PrEP could
Give HIV drugs to healthy
gay men, experts say
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