News Update - Zika Virus

Cases show Zika concern persists in South Texas
Dec. 7, 2017

The announcement of three recent Zika cases in Hidalgo County, including one that appears to have been transmitted locally by mosquitoes, demonstrates that Zika remains a threat in the Rio Grande Valley. Local health officials announced the cases on Thursday, Dec. 7 and urged residents to remain vigilant for Zika.

City and county officials in the area have responded quickly, investigating the cases, stepping up mosquito surveillance and control efforts in the surrounding areas, and going door-to-door to remind residents of Zika risks and precautions and identify anyone else with symptoms.

Residents of the Rio Grande Valley should remain on alert for Zika and take precautions even during the winter months because it often stays warm enough there for mosquito activity to continue through much of the winter, and there are reports of Zika activity in communities on the Mexican side of the border.

Hidalgo County is one of nine counties in South Texas where DSHS recommends testing all pregnant women for Zika once during each trimester of pregnancy and testing anyone with an itchy rash plus one other common Zika symptom: fever, joint pain or eye redness. This enhanced surveillance, first introduced in April 2017, has resulted in identifying Zika infections that would otherwise have gone undetected. DSHS made the testing recommendations because the area’s geography and climate put it at higher risk for Zika transmission.

(News Media Contact: Chris Van Deusen, DSHS Director of Media Relations, 512-776-7119)

DSHS Press Office on Twitter

Last updated February 15, 2018