Florida health officials reported Friday on two additional travel associated Zika virus cases in the state, one in Pasco County and one in Orange County. This is the sixth case reported in Orange County while Pasco County is reporting it’s first case.
Pasco has been added to the list of counties in which The Declaration of Public Health Emergency has been issued. To date, there have been 16 counties included in the declaration– Alachua, Brevard, Broward, Clay, Collier, Hillsborough, Lee, Miami-Dade, Orange, Osceola, Palm Beach, Pasco, Polk, Santa Rosa, Seminole and St. Johns.
Florida has reported 96 imported Zika cases to date, including five cases in pregnant women. Miami-Dade County has reported 39 cases, the most of any county in the nation.
Nationally, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has received reports on 426 travel associated Zika cases in 43 states and the District of Columbia. Of the 426 cases, 36 have been reported in pregnant women, eight were classified as sexually transmitted and one case of Guillain-Barré syndrome has been reported.
Zika virus disease (Zika) spreads to people mainly through the bite by two species of infected mosquitoes, one of which is more likely to transmit Zika. In past outbreaks, most people have not gotten sick, so people may not even know they are infected. Based on current knowledge, the greatest risk for complications from Zika is to a pregnant woman’s fetus. If a pregnant woman is infected with Zika, she can pass the virus to her fetus. Zika has been linked to cases of microcephaly, a serious birth defect, and is a sign that the baby is born with a smaller brain, which can result in medical problems and impaired development. Researchers are working to understand more about how Zika affects pregnant women and fetuses.