The North Dakota Department of Health (NDDoH) recently received confirmation from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) that a woman who traveled to Jamaica has tested positive for Zika virus. The woman is not pregnant and was not hospitalized for her illness.
“This case is a reminder that travelers to areas with Zika virus need to take precautions to prevent mosquito bites,” said Michelle Feist, Epidemiologist with the NDDoH. “Pregnant women should not travel to countries with Zika transmission, and if they must travel, should be extremely careful to avoid mosquito bites.”
Many diseases, including Zika, dengue fever and yellow fever, can be transmitted by mosquitoes. All travelers should protect themselves from mosquito bites in the same way they would at home, and by following the recommendations at www.cdc.gov/zika/prevention.
After returning from Zika affected areas, the NDDoH recommends:
- All travelers should consult their health care provider if they develop illness, such as sudden onset of fever, rash, conjunctivitis (red eyes), joint pain, muscle soreness or pain, or headache, within 14 days of returning from Zika affected areas
- Men returning from an area with Zika virus transmission should either abstain from sexual activity or correctly and consistently use condoms for all sexual acts; men should contact their healthcare provider for advice on how long they need to abstain or use condoms
- Pregnant women should consult their health care provider and seek testing for Zika virus between two and 12 weeks after returning from a Zika affected area
- Even if they do not feel sick, all travelers returning to the United States from an area with Zika should take steps to prevent mosquito bites for three weeks following their return
- Travelers who become ill should be particularly careful to avoid getting additional bites from other mosquitos during the first week of illness