Florida Gov. Rick Scott Renewed Vow to Eliminate Homegrown Zika
Florida Governor Rick Scott has renewed his vow to eliminate homegrown Zika from Miami-Dade County, the only place in the US where the disease is spreading locally.
“I know that everyone here is very concerned about how we can stop the spread of Zika. Our goal is to have no ongoing transmissions,” Gov. Scott said Friday.
At a meeting in Miami, Gov. Scott, along with state and county health officials, updated community leaders on what county workers are doing to eliminate the Zika-carrying mosquitoes.
The meeting took place at St. Mary Cathedral School, which is in the Little River area of Miami, the state’s latest Zika Hot Spot.
Last week, state officials announced that Zika was being actively transmitted by local mosquitoes in the 1 sqm area.
They took the step after identifying a 5-case cluster of Zika cases there. Since then, an additional case has been confirmed, state officials said.
The methods being used include the ground spraying of larvicide and adulticide to eradicate the female insect-carrying mosquitoes and their eggs.
But no aerial spraying is planned, at least for now, Miami-Dade Mayor Carlos Gimenez told Gov Scott.
“We don’t have a plan right now for spraying in this area. When we look at the outbreak it seems to be very localized. We probably even know the exact spot it happened in,” Mayor Gimenez said.
The county has conducted aerial spraying with naled, in other Miami Zika zones, but the use of the highly toxic pesticide is highly controversial.
Also Friday, state health officials reported 3 more homegrown Zika infections, 1 is linked to Miami Beach, and an investigation is under way to learn where the other 2 cases occurred.
This brings the number of Zika cases in Florida to 1,051, which includes 169 homegrown cases and 747 travel-related infections.
That total does not include 111 women who were pregnant when they contracted the virus, officials say.
These women, along with their babies after they give birth, are closely followed because Zika causes microcephaly, a type of congenital brain damage, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says.
On the whole, Mayor Gimenez says he is proud of the county’s effort to contain the virus. “But we still have a ways to go,” he added.
Gov. Scott visited the area at the invitation of US Rep. Frederica Wilson, who says she’s concerned been concerned that the Little River area could be overlooked.
“We don’t have all the tourist attractions that are in Wynwood or Miami Beach, but people are going to be affected here as well,” Ms. Wilson said.
The Little River zone runs from between Northwest 79th and Northwest 63rd streets and from Northwest 10th Avenue to North Miami Avenue.
The Wynwood neighborhood of Miami was the 1st zone to be designated, but that area was declared free of homegrown Zika in September.
The 1.5 area Miami Beach, which includes South Beach, was the 2nd designated, and later, a 3.5 section of mid-beach in that city was added. Although both are in Miami Beach, officials count those as 2 separate zones.
In addition to the health impact of Zika, economic officials are concerned about the impact of the virus on city’s $24.4-B tourism economy.
Last week, the CDC toughened up its warnings, telling pregnant woman, as well as women and their partners planning to get pregnant, to steer clear of Miami Beach, as well as void non-essential travel in Miami-Dade County.
The department has conducted Zika virus testing for more than 9,309 people statewide. Florida currently has the capacity to test 8,810 people for active Zika virus and 6,667 for Zika antibodies. At Governor Scott’s direction, all county health departments offer free Zika risk assessment and testing to pregnant women.
Gov. Scott says that he believes the state has enough testing kits to comply with the CDC’s new mandate, but officials acknowledged there could be 4-to-6 weeks between the time a pregnant woman is tested and she receives the results.
DEET and its chemical cousins are not the only options, when it comes to protecting yourself from Zika.
So, fight Zika Smart without toxic chemicals, that is Smart!
LTN has learned that the best non-toxic protection against Aedes Aegypti mosquitoes, the type that carry the Zika virus is from Penta5 USA
Charles Murray, CEO of Penta5 USA based in Sarasota, FL, says, “Always available is our All-Natural ANYTIME no-bite Lotion and I guess for public awareness that something is being done, the authorities have decided to use a chemical solution for the environment, hopefully on a short term basis. People don’t like chemicals and for sure bees and other insect life will be wiped out in that area.”
“Suggesting that all visitors and anyone threatened by mosquitoes use ANYTIME no-bite Lotion, packed in an easy to carry anywhere VialPaQ™ developed in Florida would appear to be a “no brainer”. Arrive off the plane or cruise liner get a VialPaQ for the number of days in Florida. Check into a hotel get a VialPaQ for each day. Have these available at schools in the risk areas. Have them at all woman’s clinics and social security offices etc. This is taking a lead, a strong home grown solution based on results from Florida’s university to fall back on and now the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine agrees with their no-bite results. All technical reports show the All-Natural ANYTIME no-bite solution is as good as the harmful chemical products used as a repellant by folks. Chemicals are not recommended for children and pets. So a risk area for our young ones.
The various leaders; Governor, Health, Agriculture and Tourism Departmental heads in Florida are not being heard in DC, where they appear to be dithering around with the Zika problem. I do feel the leadership team will miss the opportunity to allay tourist fears if they don’t do something soon.”
Mr. Murray recommends for pregnant woman, schools, hotels, airport and cruise lines that each individual be given a VialPaQ daily to ensure no-bites.
For more information go to: http://penta5usa.com/
The CDC advises people returning from travel to areas where Zika is present should continue to wear mosquito repellent for 3 weeks.
As Zika can be sexually transmitted, the agency has published guidelines regarding precautions to take on its website.
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