New Mexico mosquitoes capable of transmitting the Zika virus

Barsaba Taglieri
Mag 18, 2017

As several states report their first human cases of West Nile virus of 2017, health officials around the country are urging members of the public to take precautions to help stem the spread of the virus.

Texas' first West Nile illness of the year has been reported to the Department of State Health Services, an adult woman from Montgomery County who developed the neurologic form of the disease in late April.

"We're starting to see mosquito activity come back in (the middle) part of the state, so now we're anxious when people come back to Tennessee, if there's mosquitoes, particularly the types that spread Zika virus, that there could be local transmission". The first case in our county previous year occurred in August.

"More than 2.2 billion people live in areas where Zika virus infection is a risk and local transmission has recently been reported in Singapore and other common travel destinations for Australians", Dr Hansen said.

Testing has also seen a great reduction in the quantity of the type of mosquito species that can infect people, the culex variety.

Zika Virus is transferred through mosquitoes to human and cause birth defects. This can lead to an increased mosquito activity.

They hope this will give local leaders a chance to be prepared.

There is now no vaccine or medication for Zika Virus. In each case, travelers were infected overseas and diagnosed after they returned home.

Dr. Wajid Ahmed, medical officer of health for the unit, said mosquitoes carrying the West Nile virus are more active in at dawn and dusk.

Besides spraying for mosquitoes, they're encouraging home owners to eliminate any standing water where mosquitoes breed. Ninety percent of Americans think they are unlikely to contract Zika and 64 percent trust the government to handle the threat, but that doesn't mean bites won't occur or affect you in any way. She pointed out that the rainy season will have a high influence on this year's mosquito population numbers.

Hear Dr. Vicki Kramer, chief of the CDPH Vector Borne Disease Section, talk about the importance of removing standing water to prevent mosquito bites.

Use EPA-approved insect repellent every time they go outside.

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