NYS Department of Health finds Zika virus in seven people in the State

Aedes aegypti mosquito
FILE - This 2006 file photo provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention shows a female Aedes aegypti mosquito in the process of acquiring a blood meal from a human host. The The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on Tuesday, Jan. 19, 2016, announced new guidance for doctors whose pregnant patients may have traveled to regions with a tropical illness linked to birth defects. Officials say doctors should ask pregnant women about their travel and certain symptoms, and, if warranted, test them for an infection with the Zika virus. The virus is spread through mosquito bites. (James Gathany/Centers for Disease Control and Prevention via AP, File)

ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) – The New York State Department of Health has confirmed that two additional cases of Zika virus have been detected in New York, bringing the total to seven.

All of the infected patients are travelers returning to New York from countries where Zika virus is ongoing.

Officials say the Zika virus cannot be transmitted by casual person-to-person contact. While there is concern that Zika virus may be sexually transmitted, officials at the Centers for Disease Control have said the evidence of sexual transmission is insufficient.

Health Commissioner Dr. Howard Zucker said, “Because Zika virus is primarily transmitted by infected mosquitos, there is very limited chance of local transmission in New York during the winter.  Even so, the Department of Health is taking steps now to protect the health of all New Yorkers and to prepare for the warmer months when mosquitos will be active in New York.”

The symptoms of Zika virus infection are usually very mild, and many people might not even realize they have been infected.  However, there have been reports of increased cases of a birth defect known as microcephaly that may be associated with Zika virus infection among pregnant women. If you are pregnant and have travelled to a country where Zika is ongoing, contact your health care provider if you experience the following symptoms: fever, rash, joint pain, or conjunctivitis (red eyes). Symptoms typically begin 2 to 7 days after being bitten by an infected mosquito.

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