Hawaii County reports first travel-related Zika case in 2016

AP Photo
AP Photo

A single imported case of Zika virus was reported Tuesday by the state Dept. of Health and the County of Hawaii.

This is the first travel-related case of Zika on Hawaii Island this year confirmed by the DOH State Laboratories Division.

The Hawaii resident has a history of recent travel to the South Pacific and is past the point of being infectious to mosquitoes. Hawaii has no locally acquired Zika cases at this time, and no mosquitoes are transmitting the disease within the state.

A DOH Vector Control team was sent to visit the individual’s residence and place of employment to survey the areas for mosquitoes, and treated any areas of concern to reduce mosquitoes and breeding sites. The state continues to coordinate closely with its county partners to assure a targeted and efficient response.

Zika continues to spread in multiple regions across the world, and imported or travel-related cases are expected to increase this year. Travelers are advised to prevent infection while traveling by using repellant and by staying away from mosquitoes. Travelers should also prevent mosquito bites when they return from areas with mosquito-borne disease outbreaks, as well as monitor their health and see their healthcare provider about illness occurring in the 2–3 weeks after return from travel.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends special precautions for women who are pregnant or may become pregnant. Pregnant women should not travel to areas with Zika. If travel cannot be avoided, women should consult with their healthcare providers first and vigilantly follow steps to protect themselves from mosquitoes.

For more tips on how to prevent the spread of mosquito-borne viruses, visit fightthebitehawaii.com.


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