zika

Canada's Public Health Agency is telling pregnant Canadian women who visited Miami-Dade and Broward counties in Florida on or after June 15 to take precautions against the Zika virus.

Scott Says Florida Remains 'Safe State' Amid Zika Battle

Aug 3, 2016
Lottie Watts/WUSF / WUSF

Florida political leaders say controlling the spread of the Zika virus is doable but will take everyone's help, as travel advisories have been posted about visiting the state.

Health News Florida Reporters Talk Zika

Aug 3, 2016
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Florida Gov. Rick Scott now says the number of locally acquired Zika cases had climbed to 15.  Florida is the first state in the US to have locally acquired cases of the disease, and so far officials say the transmission’s confined to a small area: one square mile in Wynwood, which is just north of downtown Miami.  Scott’s asked the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to activate its emergency response team.

The key to avoiding Zika is avoiding contact with the mosquitoes that carry Zika. The official advice is to wear bug repellent, avoid affected areas, and stay indoors. But for people who spend extended periods of time on Wynwood's streets, following that advice is difficult.

Florida Department of Health

  Now that Zika is being transmitted in Florida, epidemiologists expect to see pockets of Zika outbreaks to crop up around the state.

Florida Department of Health

Pregnant women are being asked to stay away from the Wynwood neighborhood in Miami.

The head of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued a Zika-related travel warning for pregnant women to an area just north of Downtown Miami after 10 more people were suspected of getting the virus locally.

Schools and school districts are among those reacting to news of 14  locally-acquired cases of the Zika virus confirmed in South Florida.

With the first day of school still weeks away, Miami-Dade County Public Schools sent out an automated voicemail to parents last week reinforcing basic anti-mosquito measures.

It's official. The Zika virus has established a toehold in Florida.

Fourteen people likely caught Zika in a neighborhood north of downtown Miami, health officials said Monday. That means mosquitoes in that area have picked up the virus and are spreading it.

Zika can cause severe birth defects if a woman is infected at anytime during pregnancy.

So the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is doing something it has never done before: issuing a travel advisory to a part of the continental U.S. because of an outbreak of an infectious disease.

Gov. Rick Scott hosted a roundtable in Pinellas Park to discuss Zika.

With 10 new local cases of Zika likely transmitted in the Miami area, local and state officials are doing what they can to keep the state's tourism-friendly reputation intact.

The Florida Department of Health

Florida health officials have identified 10 more people who likely contracted the Zika virus through a mosquito bite in the Miami-Dade County area, bringing the total to 14.

News of four recent cases of Zika acquired by mosquito bites in neighborhoods north of downtown Miami was not received with concern by owners and patrons of restaurants and bars in the popular area of Wynwood. 

 

 

Florida officials have been slow to partner with federal officials on the investigation of locally-transmitted Zika cases, according to Reuters.

John Moore/Getty Images

The Zika virus is now being actively spread in the continental United States, Florida officials announced Friday.

The virus, which is principally transmitted by mosquitoes, has been triggering public health warnings — especially among women of childbearing age — because of Zika’s propensity to cause birth defects.

Abe Aboraya/WMFE

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is not adding Florida or Miami to its list of areas where pregnant women should avoid traveling. 

Mosquito-Borne Zika Cases Confirmed In Miami-Dade

Jul 29, 2016
Florida Department of Health

Florida's worries about the Zika virus have turned into reality.

In the middle of the state's typically humid, buggy summer, Gov. Rick Scott announced Friday that four Zika cases in South Florida were likely caused by mosquito bites.

Two more possible non-travel-related cases of Zika virus are being investigated in South Florida, the Florida Department of Health confirmed Wednesday.

CDC Releases New Guidelines For Treating Zika

Jul 26, 2016

The Centers for Disease Control released new guidelines for treating Zika, Monday.

CDC Urges Doctors To Aggressively Test Pregnant Women For Zika

Jul 26, 2016
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The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is calling on doctors to more aggressively screen pregnant women for the Zika virus and to take advantage of new testing technology to improve the diagnosis, follow-up and monitoring of those who have been infected.

Abe Aboraya/WMFE

Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia Burwell said Congress’ failure to fully fund the fight against Zika could slow down development of a vaccine.

How A Caribbean Island Became Prime Source Of U.S. Zika Cases

Jul 24, 2016
Erika Santelices/AFP/Getty Images

More than 1,400 Americans contracted Zika while traveling outside the U.S. this year and a Caribbean-island nation is one of the top destinations where they caught the virus.

Visitors to the Dominican Republic account for more than a fifth of the confirmed Zika cases in the U.S. through mid-July, according to data from state health departments. New York, Florida and California alone tally 304 cases linked to the country, the data show.

While Florida Health officials are investigating the first potential local mosquito transmission of the Zika virus in the continental U-S, some are questioning whether the country is prepared to care for a growing number of children born with microcephaly.

While investigations regarding what might be the nation's first locally acquired cases of Zika in Miami-Dade and Broward counties continue, public officials warn South Florida residents to take an active part in preventing mosquito-breeding zones. 

Chalmers Vasquez, Miami Dade County's mosquito control manager, says it is up to communities to keep their neighborhoods from becoming mosquito-breeding zones. 

In a well-kept neighborhood in Miami with lush gardens, Larry Smart, a county mosquito control inspector, holds a turkey baster up to the light. "If you look closely, you'll see some moving fast. They're wriggling around," he says. "That's actually mosquito larvae." Smart uses the turkey baster to sample standing water in hard-to-reach places.

Florida officials are still investigating what could become the first non-travel-related cases of Zika in the United States.

U.S. Surgeon General Vivek Murthy spoke with Health News Florida Editor Julio Ochoa about how the Centers For Disease Control and Prevention is helping with the response.

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A second possible non-travel related case of Zika virus was announced today in Broward County, health officials said.

Muhammad Mahdi Karim / Wikimedia Commons

The Florida Department of Health is investigating a possible non-travel related case of Zika in Miami-Dade County.

It's been thought that the Zika virus spreads only through mosquito bites or sexual contact. But someone in Utah appears to have caught Zika another way — while caring for an elderly family member infected with the virus.

"The new case in Utah is a surprise, showing that we still have more to learn about Zika," Erin Staples, a medical epidemiologist at the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, reported Monday.

Doctors have known for some time that a man can spread the Zika virus to a woman through sex. Now officials have documented the first case in which a woman apparently infected a man through unprotected sexual intercourse.

The case occurred in New York City when a woman in her 20s returned from a trip to a country where Zika is spreading, according to a report released Friday by the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

On Wednesday, Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) chaired a congressional hearing on the Zika Virus—which the head of the Centers for Disease Control is now calling a “silent epidemic.” This comes as Congress still has not taken action on a bill to fund Zika prevention efforts and will recess soon.

  Though congress is still battling over Zika funding, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is handing out $25 million to states to fight the mosquito-borne illness.

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