The Centers for Disease Control and Florida Department of Health have expanded guidance for travel and testing of pregnant women and men and women of reproductive age for Zika Virus Infection and Mosquito-borne illness transmission in Miami-Dade County.
The Zika Virus in Miami-Dade County
The Florida Department of Health has identified cases of the Zika Virus in areas of Wynwood and Miami Beach that are not linked to travel to a foreign country. The local health department is conducting an extensive investigation to determine a potential source. Pregnant women should avoid travel to these designated areas and should follow steps to prevent mosquito bites. The same recommendation applies for men and women who live in or travel to these areas. For all other areas of Miami-Dade County, while further investigations are underway, CDC advises strict adherence to precautions to prevent mosquito bites.
The Department of Health has established a Zika Virus Information Hotline for more information: 1-855-622-6735.
For more information on the designated areas and travel advisories, please visit http://www.cdc.gov/zika/intheus/florida-update.html
Zika Virus Facts
The Zika Virus is spread by the bite of an infected mosquito (Aedes Aegypti and Aedes Albopictus).
The virus can be passed to a pregnant woman’s fetus and has been known to cause birth severe birth defects such as microcephaly, Guillain-Barre syndrome, eye problems, hearing deficits and impaired growth.
Men who have been infected with the virus can pass it onto a woman.
There is currently no vaccine available for the prevention of the Zika Virus. The best way to prevent mosquito-borne illnesses is to protect you and your family from bites.
- Pregnant women, men and women of reproductive age and their parnters should avoid travel to the designated areas identified with active Zika virus transmission. Those living in the area should follow steps to prevent mosquito bites.
- Use insect repellent on yourself and all members of your family, including little ones, when going outdoors. Wearing long sleeves and pants are also recommended.
- Use Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)-registered insect repellents with one of the following active ingredients: DEET, picaridin, IR3535, or oil of lemon eucalyptus or para-menthane-diol. (children under 2 months should not be given insect repellant. Children under three years of age should not be given oil of lemon eucalyptus or para-menthane-diol).
- The Zika Virus can be passed through sex from a person who has Zika to his or her partner. Condoms (and other barriers to protect against infection) can reduce the chance of transferring the virus to a partner.
- Ensure there is no standing water in and around your home. Even a capful of water is a breeding ground for hundreds of mosquitos. The Florida Department of Health in Miami-Dade County asks residents to “spill the water” if you see standing water anywhere you go outdoors.
- Wear protective clothing, long sleeves and pants when traveling outdoors.
Preventing the Zika Virus in Children:
- Protect children from mosquito bites by dressing them in clothing that covers arms and legs.
- Use mosquito netting to cover the cribs, strollers and baby carriers.
- Never spray insect repellent directly on a child’s face. Instead, spray it on your hands and then apply sparingly, taking care to avoid the eyes and mouth. In children older than 2 months, do not apply insect repellent onto a child’s hands, eyes, mouth, or to irritated or broken skin. (*Do not use insect repellent on babies under 2 months of age. Do not use products containing oil of lemon eucalyptus or para-menthane-diol on children younger than 3 years old.)
- If your child has symptoms, take him or her to see a doctor or other healthcare provider.
- Fever (≥100.4° F) in a baby less than 2 months old always requires evaluation by a medical professional. If your baby is less than 2 months old and has a fever, call your healthcare provider or get medical care.
Symptoms may last from several days to a week. Many people that become infected with Zika virus may have no symptoms at all or they may be mild. Zika virus symptoms include:
- Joint Pain
- Conjunctivitis (red eyes)
- Muscle pain
Zika Virus Treatment
There is no vaccine or medicine for the Zika Virus.
- There are blood and urine tests available that can confirm a Zika infection.
- If you believe your child is exhibiting to Zika virus symptoms, make an appointment or contact us today for Zika virus testing.
Sources and for more information about the Zika Virus:
Centers for Disease and Infection Control:
Florida Department of Health:
Florida Department of Health in Miami-Dade County:
Physicians should contact the County Health Department if they suspect an individual may have a mosquito-borne illness. The Department of Health provides testing services for physicians treating patients with clinical signs of mosquito-borne disease.The Florida Department of Health continues to advise the public to remain diligent in their personal mosquito protection efforts.
Residents of Florida are encouraged to report dead birds via the Web site www.wildflorida.org/bird
or by calling their local county health department.
Additional reference http://www.cdc.gov/