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America Now Has Its First Zika Case Of The Year

America Now Has Its First Zika Case Of The Year

We all remember how the Zika virus was ravaging some countries within South America, the Caribbean and even America just a year ago. Luckily, the summer of 2017 has proven to be much different. Earlier this year, Brazil ended its nationwide Zika emergency alert, which is a good sign since Brazil was particularly afflicted by the Zika virus last year. There has not been many reports in the news this summer telling of Zika outbreaks occurring anywhere in the world. Here in America, the West Nile virus seems to be the only mosquito-borne disease that is infecting people. It looks like the summer, and the rest of 2017, will pass us by without one single American case of the Zika virus…… Unfortunately no, this will not be the case, as an American citizen has recently contracted the disease.

The victim of the Zika virus is not being named, of course, but the infected individual is living in Oswego County, New York. According to the Oswego County Health Department, the individual contracted the disease during a recent trip to the Caribbean.  The Zika spreading mosquito, the aedes aegypti, is common in the Caribbean region. Oswego County, on the other hand, is too far north for any Zika carrying mosquitoes to survive, and no aedes aegypti mosquitoes have ever been found in this region of the US. This makes local transmission nearly impossible. According to Oswego County Public Health Director, Jiancheng Huang, health officials do not consider Oswego County to be threatened by an outbreak of the Zika virus at this time.

Although the summer of 2017 has been largely free of Zika cases, there were many cases reported earlier in the year. It may be hard to believe, but according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the United States has seen a total of two hundred and fifty four cases of the Zika virus this year. However, all but three of these cases were contracted by travelers returning to America from affected areas. American women that are currently pregnant are still urged to avoid traveling to areas with a history of Zika outbreaks.

Did you think that the summer would pass in America with no cases of the Zika virus being reported? Are you surprised more traveling Americans have not contracted the Zika virus?