HONOLULU – As Hawaii Island appears to be on the verge of ending its outbreak of dengue fever, the Hawaii State Department of Health announced they are investigating another imported case of Zika virus in Hawaii.
The Kauai resident has a history of recent travel to Latin America and may still be infectious. This is the second case of Zika to be confirmed this year by the department’s State Laboratories Division.
DOH says the individual has been advised to keep indoors and stay protected from mosquitoes. No additional information will be made available about this case to respect the privacy of the individual, the state says.
The health department says a Vector Control team will visit the individual’s residence to survey the area for mosquitoes and determine if there is a need to treat the area to reduce any mosquito breeding sites. DOH is coordinating closely with its county partners to assure a targeted and efficient response.
“As Zika continues to spread in multiple regions across the world, we anticipate that we will experience an increase in imported cases and must take precautionary measures to reduce our risk for an outbreak in Hawaii,” said Health Director Dr. Virginia Pressler in a media release. “There are several simple steps that we can take as a community to accomplish this, such as getting rid of standing water around our homes to reduce mosquito breeding sites and using repellant or protective clothing to prevent mosquito bites. It is crucial that we keep these practices top-of-mind as we prepare for travel in and out of the state, especially to areas that may be affected by Zika and other mosquito-borne illnesses.”
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends special precautions for women who are pregnant or may become pregnant. Pregnant women should not travel to areas with Zika, the state says. If travel cannot be avoided, women should consult with their healthcare providers first and vigilantly follow steps to protect themselves from mosquitoes.