Travelers being warned about visiting areas with Zika

This 2006 photo provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention shows a female Aedes aegypti mosquito in the process of acquiring a blood meal from a human host.

HARTFORD, Conn. (WTNH)  –  Anyone planning on traveling to areas affected by the Zika virus are being urged to take precautions.

The Connecticut Department of Health is passing on warnings especially to pregnant women or women planning on becoming pregnant to avoid traveling to countries and Puerto Rico where the Zika virus is known to exist.   If you do travel to those areas you should take steps to prevent mosquito bites by using insect repellent, wear long sleeves and pants and stay in air conditioned places or places that have windows with screens.

According to the Centers for Disease Control Zika is expected to infect 1 in 5 Puerto Ricans or approximately 700,000 people in Puerto Rico by the end of the year.   With a large Puerto Rican population in the state and flights from here to Puerto Rico and countries that have Zika, the CT DPH wants travelers to be aware of the health concerns.

CT Health Commissioner Dr. Raul Pino says “Women who are pregnant should not travel to areas with Zika.  If you must travel to one of these areas , talk to your healthcare provider first and strictly follow steps to prevent mosquito bites during your trip.  With hundreds of positive cases nationwide, I encourage residents to be vigilant.   We at the state level are monitoring the situation with the utmost diligence.”

Connecticut has four confirmed cases of Zika virus and there are 426 cases in the United States.

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