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Cost of Chik-V test a deterrent

The cost of the test to confirm the presence of chikungunya is a deterrent for people who might have the virus as some are unwilling to pay up to $8,000 to get it done. Latest figures from the health ministry put confirmed cases of Chikungunya (also referred to as Chik-V) at 35, with over 300 suspected cases in at least seven parishes. But checks by the local media have found that many Jamaicans were opting not to pay for the tests to confirm if their illness was due to Chik-V, because of the cost which some find to be exorbitant, while others insist it is not necessary. Cost of the test ranges from $3,600 at Andrews Memorial Hospital to $8,000 at the University Hospital of the West Indies (UHWI). Doctors at Medical Associates Hospital said that many patients are choosing not to do the test due to the cost associated and many even see it as irrelevant