Zika virus is still a risk in New York City and city health officials remind the public to travel with caution.
Through July 28, the NYC Dept. of Health & Mental Hygiene has reported 100 travel associated Zika virus cases. Broken down by borough it’s as follows: Bronx (31), Brooklyn (22), Manhattan (29), Queens (17) and Staten Island (1).
In all of 2016, nearly 1000 cases were reported in the city.
Nearly nine out 10 of the cases are reported in women.
More than a third of the cases are linked to travel to the Dominican Republic, followed by Cuba, Jamaica, Haiti and Honduras.
- People usually get Zika through a mosquito bite—but only certain kinds of mosquitoes (Aedes mosquitoes) can spread Zika.
- Zika can also be spread through sexual contact and blood contact (i.e. blood transfusions, sharing injection equipment, etc.). Zika is not spread by casual contact.
- Most people (80%) who get infected with Zika do not get sick. For those who do get sick, the sickness is usually mild.
- Since Zika causes birth defects, there is special guidance related to pregnancy. See below.
- There is no Zika vaccine and no medicine that treats Zika.
Zika has not been found in New York City mosquitoes, but local mosquitoes can spread other diseases, like West Nile virus. New Yorkers can help stop the spread of mosquito-borne viruses by following these steps:
- Apply insect repellents and wear long sleeves or pants in the evening during peak mosquito season (June through September).
- Install or repair screens on windows and doors.
- Empty standing water from containers such as flower pots, gutters, buckets, pool covers, pet water dishes, discarded tires and birdbaths. A very small body of water can be the breeding ground for hundreds of mosquito eggs.
- Make sure backyard pools are properly maintained and chlorinated.
- Report standing water to 311. The Health Department inspects standing water complaints and files notices of violation against property owners who fail to get rid of it. When standing water cannot be drained, the City applies treatments called larvicides that kill mosquitoes before they mature and can spread disease.
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