Health officials investigating “several cases” of West Nile, Zika virus in Alabama

“Mosquitoes can transmit viruses when they bite, causing illnesses that range from mild to severe or even fatal.”

 

Alabama health officials say there are investigations into several reported cases of Zika and West Nile virus.

According to the Alabama Department of Public Health, there have been three confirmed cases of Zika virus in the state since May.

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Last week, Shelby County health officials began warning local residents about a confirmed case in Pelham.

“To date in Alabama, the Zika virus has only been identified in individuals known to have traveled to areas where Zika is known to be endemic,” the Alabama Department of Public Health said in a release Monday. “There has been no local transmission.”

An assistant professor in UAB’s Division of Infectious Diseases will discuss the state of Zika at a 1:30 p.m. news conference. You can watch it here, on the WVTM 13 Facebook page or in the WVTM 13 News app.

CDC tips for prevention:

  • When going outdoors, use EPA-registered repellents containing 20 percent DEET on skin or permethrin on clothes. Follow label instructions carefully when using any repellent. Repellents should not be used on infants less than 2 months old.
  • Wear loose-fitting long sleeves and long pants.
  • Install or repair screens on windows and doors. Use air-conditioning, if available.
  • Empty standing water from items outside homes such as flowerpots, buckets, old tires and children’s pools.
  • Clean clogged gutters and clear drainage ditches and pipes of debris.

Zika symptoms

  • Fever
  • Rash
  • Headache
  • Joint pain
  • Red eyes
  • Muscle pain

Symptoms can last for several days to a week. People usually don’t get sick enough to go to the hospital, and they very rarely die of Zika. Once a person has been infected with Zika, they are likely to be protected from future infections.

More Zika info:

What everyone needs to know about Zika

How Zika spreads/Protecting your family

Is bug spray enough to fight Zika?

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