Florida Department of Health investigates possible non-travel-related Zika virus case
Health officials say possible case originated in Miami-Dade County
MIAMI – There are new concerns over how the Zika virus is spread in Florida.
The Florida Department of Health said in a news release Tuesday that it was investigating the first possible, non-travel-related case of the mosquito-borne illness in Miami-Dade County.
Health officials did not elaborate on whether the infection was transmitted through mosquitoes found in the county or through sexual intercourse.
The department is working with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to learn more about the case.
"Mosquito control has already conducted reduction and prevention activities in the area of investigation," the release said.
County health officials are also issuing Zika virus prevention kits and repellent in the area of investigation.
The announcement comes a month after Gov. Rick Scott confirmed the state's first instance of Zika-related microcephaly. The condition is brought on by the virus and results in babies being born with significantly smaller heads because of abnormal brain development.
In that birth, the mother contracted the Zika virus in Haiti and traveled to Florida for her delivery.
"If Zika virus is confirmed to be in South Florida from a locally acquired case in a pregnant woman, then in that specific area ... or the specific ZIP code in which the woman is identified, those are the pregnant women who really should be tested," Dr. Elizabeth Etkin-Kramer said.
As of Tuesday, there were 283 confirmed cases of the Zika virus throughout the state. Fifty of them were reported in Broward County and 88 were found in Miami-Dade County.
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