Health officials find probable Zika infection in Texas

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Wednesday, July 26, 2017
Officials detect 1st Zika transmission in Texas this year
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Officials detect 1st Zika transmission in Texas this year

HIDALGO COUNTY, Texas (KTRK) -- A Hidalgo County resident previously diagnosed with Zika infection was most likely infected in Texas, according to the Texas Department of State Health Services and Hidalgo County Health and Human Services.

The infection was most likely transmitted by a mosquito bite in south Texas within the last few months because the individual has not recently traveled nor had any other risk factors. The individual is no longer at risk of spreading the virus.

Thousands of tests were done since April, and the additional testing led to the identification of this infection.

There is no current evidence of ongoing Zika transmission in the state. Public health officials continue to conduct testings to detect future Zika infections as early as possible. DHSH and the county are asking everyone to be aware of the most common Zika symptoms: fever, joint pain, rash and eye redness. Approximately one in five people infected with the virus show symptoms.

Health officials discourage pregnant women from traveling to Central or South America. If you must, they suggest wearing clothing and bug spray. They are also urging you to eliminate any standing water around your home or workplace in order to limit the number of places in which mosquitoes can breed.

People throughout the Rio Grande Valley and Texas should continue to protect themselves from mosquito bites by

-Using EPA-approved insect repellent every time they go outside

-Using air condition or window and door screens that are in good repair to keep mosquitoes out.

-Limiting outdoor activities during peak mosquito times.

-Covering exposed skin with long pants and long-sleeved shirts whenever possible.

-Removing standing water in and around homes, including in trash cans, toys, tires, flower pots and any other containers so mosquitoes can't lay their eggs.

-Using a larvicide in water that can't be drained to keep mosquitoes from developing into biting adults.

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