Cameron Co. Teen Infected in Sixth Zika Virus Case
BROWNSVILLE - A sixth case of the Zika virus was confirmed in the Rio Grande Valley on Thursday.
Cameron County health authorities released the information Thursday stating a 14-year-old teenager was infected.
In total, 17 cases have been reported in Cameron County. Eleven of those are travel-related, while the remaining six were locally-acquired.
Cameron County Health Authority Dr. James Castillo said the teenager lives near East Price Road and South Padre Highway. The area is about a mile and a half away from the five locally-acquired Zika cases confirmed in the past weeks.
Dr. Castillo said the teen’s case is not connected to the other group. He said the Cameron County Department of Health and Human Services is testing those closest to the teen to make sure they aren’t infected.
“Our investigation so far - for the 14-year-old - is that no other people in his household have had symptoms. But we’re testing them,” he said.
Dr. Castillo said that unlike the first confirmed locally-acquired Zika cases, they won’t conduct door-to-door testing.
“We’re not going to be testing asymptomatic people outside of the household. So we’re not doing what we had done on the initial responses. Again, all of those tests were negative. We did find additional four cases, but only after they became symptomatic,” he said.
The physician said the city of Brownsville sprayed for mosquitoes on Wednesday and Thursday. He said he expects to see few cases per month. “I think local cases. I think we’re going to continue to have quite a bit of travel,” he said.
Dr. Castillo said people should see their doctor if they develop symptoms including fever, rash and joint pain. He advised Brownsville residents to wear long sleeves and spray themselves with repellent.
“Any place that the conditions are right and the weather is right for these mosquitoes, and you have travelers, you have the recipe for Zika transmission,” he said.
The health officials said this case doesn’t mean Zika is wide spread in Cameron County.