Thu | Feb 21, 2019

Shortage of strong DEET on market

Published:Wednesday | January 16, 2019 | 12:00 AM

THE EDITOR, Sir:

Having read the many public-service announcements from the Ministry of Health about dengue suggesting the use of repellents containing DEET, I think it fair to point out that there is very little on the market.

Most repellents sold locally contain between five and 15 per cent of this ingredient, while the only 'serious' one that used to be sold had 25 per cent. I believe that I purchased the last can or two of this type, as everywhere has sold out, and having checked with the distributor, I find that they don't seem to know if or when they are getting more.

I managed to get some repellent brought by a friend visiting from England, where they take these things much more seriously, most having 50 per cent DEET content!

Could I suggest that one of our local pharmaceutical companies package a serious repellent for the local market, which undercuts the imported products and provides us with real protection? There must be money to be made here. Perhaps it should be available through the National Health Fund or at least the Jamaica Drug for the Elderly Programme. As they say, prevention is better than cure.

STEPHEN HODGES

PO Box 597

Kingston 10