Zika Update: What Dane County Residents Need to Know
Thursday, August 4, 2016 - 12:27pm
With the recent news of Zika virus cases in Florida, all residents are reminded to stay up to date on travel advisories from the CDC and to take measures to prevent mosquito bites if you are traveling.
Currently, the greatest chance for a Dane County resident to contract the Zika virus is to travel to a Zika-infected area or to have sexual contact with someone who has traveled to a Zika-infected area.
In over ten years of mosquito monitoring in Dane County, the mosquito species that carry Zika have not been found here and have not yet been found in Wisconsin. PHMDC is continuing to monitor Zika news and is taking action to reduce the risk of residents contracting the Zika virus.
Here is a summary of PHMDC efforts:
- Mosquito monitoring:PHMDC, in partnership with City of Madison agencies, six neighboring communities, and the University of Wisconsin, carries out mosquito larvae monitoring and control activities in the Madison metropolitan area. This year, additional monitoring is underway in outlying communities to detect the presence of the mosquito species that transmits the Zika virus.
- Planning for future scenarios:
- PHMDC staff are participating in meetings with the state and CDC to get the most up to date information to inform our response efforts.
- Our mosquito monitoring and control plans have been adapted to cover the mosquito species that carry Zika.
- Zika case follow-up:When a Dane County resident is diagnosed with Zika a PHMDC Public Health Nurse is assigned to follow up with the infected person and to provide education about how not to infect others through sexual activity. To date, four Dane County residents have tested positive for the Zika virus. In all cases, the Zika infection was contracted during foreign travel.
What people need to know about Zika:
- Zika primarily spreads through the bite of an infected mosquito. You can also get Zika through sex with an infected partner.
- The best way to prevent Zika is to prevent mosquito bites and to avoid unprotected sex with someone who may be infected.
- Zika is linked to birth defects – so women who are pregnant or are planning a pregnancy should avoid travel to areas that have active Zika infections.
- Many people infected with Zika will have no symptoms or mild symptoms that last several days to a week. However, Zika infection during pregnancy can cause a serious birth defects, stillbirths, and miscarriages. Even though the Zika carrying mosquito is not in our area, it is always a good idea to protect yourself against mosquito bites by wearing protective clothing, avoiding outdoor activities at dawn and dusk and using an effective mosquito repellant.
PHMDC will continue to inform the public on our mosquito and virus monitoring efforts when new information is available.
Individuals with Zika symptoms are advised to see a healthcare provider if they have visited an area where the virus is present or had sexual contact with a person who traveled to an area with Zika virus.
For more detailed information about PHMDC efforts to control Zika
For detailed Zika information from the CDC
- Jeff Golden, (608) 243-0302, firstname.lastname@example.org