Case of Zika virus confirmed in Johnson County

FILE - In this Jan. 27, 2016, file photo, an Aedes aegypti mosquito is photographed through a microscope at the Fiocruz institute in Recife, Pernambuco state, Brazil. The number of pregnant women in the United States infected with Zika virus is suddenly tripling, due to a change in how the government is counting cases. In a change announced Friday, May 20, 2016, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention will count all women who tested positive, regardless of whether they had suffered symptoms. (AP Photo/Felipe Dana, File)

JOHNSON COUNTY, Kan. (KSNT) — The Johnson County Department of Health and Environment has received test results confirming that someone in the county has been infected with the Zika virus.

The case is travel-associated, meaning that this person had traveled to an area where mosquitoes are spreading the virus.

Currently, no more information about the case is being revealed to the public in order to protect the privacy of the person infected.

“Because this case was acquired while traveling, we want to emphasize that the risk of contracting Zika virus in our area is extremely low,” said Lougene Marsh, JCDHE director. “We have provided information to the individual about avoiding mosquito bites to prevent further spread of the virus,” Marsh added.

Marsh said that travelers returning to the U.S. from an area with active Zika virus transmission should take steps to prevent mosquito bites for at least three weeks so that they do not spread the virus locally.

JCDHE is conducting a study right now with the University of Kansas to determine how many mosquitoes who can carry Zika are present in Johnson County.

This is the third case of Zika confirmed in Kansas. The first was reported on March 11 in Southwest Kansas and the second was reported on May 13 in Northeast Kansas. Both of those individuals had also traveled to a county where the virus is prevalent.

JCDHE and the CDC also recommend that pregnant women do not travel to areas with Zika, as it can cause microcephaly. They also add that Zika can be spread sexually from a man to his partner, so anyone concerned about contracting the virus through sex should either abstain or use condoms every time they have penetrative sex.

Comments are closed.