St Jude Hospital reports increase in “red eye” cases in the south

St Jude Hospital is reporting a significant increase in the number of cases of conjunctivitis, more commonly referred to in St Lucia as “red eye”, in the south of the island over the past two weeks.

St Jude Hospital has recorded 47 cases of “red eye” so far for the month of July. The hospital registered just two cases of red eye for all of June.

This spike in new cases comes after the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) issued an epidemiological update last month warning of outbreaks of conjunctivitis in five countries and territories of the Americas, including Martinique and Guadeloupe.

Conjunctivitis is an inflammation or swelling of the conjunctiva. The conjunctiva is the thin transparent layer of tissue that lines the inner surface of the eyelid and covers the white part of the eye.

The most common symptoms of red eye or conjunctivitis include redness, watery or mucus discharge, and a burning, sandy, or gritty feeling in one eye.

Conjunctivitis is highly contagious and spread by direct contact with secretions or contact with contaminated objects and surfaces.

St Jude Hospital advises the general public that simple hygiene measures can help minimize transmission to others.

  • Frequent hand washing is an essential and highly effective way to prevent the spread of infection. Hands should be wet with water and plain soap, and rubbed together for 15 to 30 seconds.
  • Alcohol-based hand sanitizers are a good alternative for disinfecting hands if a sink is not available.
  • Adults or children with conjunctivitis should not share handkerchiefs, tissues, towels, cosmetics, or bed sheets/pillows with uninfected family or friends.

Anyone experiencing the symptoms of conjunctivitis should immediately seek medical attention.


  1. Anonymous
    July 14, 2017 at 5:06 pm

    Do we have the same strain of red-eye that is spreading through the Americas? If so how did it get here and why is it that persons in the south are inflicted first?

    1. Anonymous
      July 14, 2017 at 6:56 pm

      It’s not necessarily that the south is affected first. It’s just that St jude Hospital can only speak to the information it has. St Jude doesn’t keep stats for the north. They are just more proactive in sharing information.

  2. Anonymous
    July 14, 2017 at 6:54 pm

    Well I guess the north is not to concern to notify the public

  3. Anonymous
    July 15, 2017 at 8:43 am

    Great that school is out. The numbers would have been greater.

  4. Nameless
    July 15, 2017 at 2:28 pm

    This is saying seek medical attention. When you go to the doc they telling you they cannot do anything for you. You have to allow it to go away on its own. Choops