Zika travel advisory in Miami Beach, too

Pregnant women and those planning to conceive have been urged to stay away from two areas, a 3.9 square kilometer section of Miami Beach and a neighborhood north of downtown called Wynwood, where mosquitoes are actively spreading the disease, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said. We have another area now that's 1.5 miles on Miami Beach.

Pregnant women should avoid travel to the designated area of Miami Beach, in addition to the designated area of Wynwood, both located in Miami-Dade County.

"We're in the midst of mosquito season and expect more Zika infections in the days and months to come", CDC Director Dr. Tom Frieden said.

According to bajainsider.com, as of August 18 there are now 1,619 confirmed cases of Zika in Mexico since January.

Matthew DeGennaro from Florida International University says current methods of preventing Zika transmission are only proving limited success.

As of Friday, the Florida Department of Health counted 36 individuals in Florida who've become infected through local transmission and 488 individuals whose infections stemmed from traveling outside the country to an area of mosquito-borne transmission or from having sex with such a traveler.

The five cases include three men and two women, two of whom are local residents and three who were tourists visiting from New York, Texas and Taiwan. It is most risky to pregnant women, due to the virus' link to microcephaly, a devastating birth defect where babies are born with smaller than normal heads and underdeveloped brains. In its statement Friday, the agency said pregnant women may also want to consider postponing nonessential travel throughout Miami-Dade County if they're concerned about potential exposure to the mosquito-borne virus. Florida health officials have been aggressively spraying pesticides there.

"Unfortunately a risk everybody's going to have to take when they step outside the door", she said.

The director of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says officials will not be able to spray the South Beach area to prevent Zika as they have in other areas because of high-rise buildings and strong winds.

Florida Gov. Rick Scott says officials have identified a second area of Zika transmission on the US mainland. Now I'm not saying that people that don't travel to these places won't catch Zika, but two maps - one published by the CDC and another by the Health Ministry of Mexico - show where catching Zika is more common.

Earlier this month, the Defense Department said that one of the service members with the Zika virus was pregnant.

Zika is spread by mosquitoes and sexual contact. Brazil, especially, has reported the vast majority of cases of Zika-linked microcephaly.

They also heighten concerns over Zika's spread in the continental United States.

Organizers for Art Basel Miami Beach and other upcoming events cautiously expressed confidence in the region's mosquito control efforts.

In Miami Beach, the Zika transmission zone is a small area that stretches from 8th Street to 28th street, and runs the length of the city from the beach to Biscayne Bay.

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