McAllen Zika Case Confirmed to be False Positive
MCALLEN – The Hidalgo County Health and Human Services said it confirmed the Zika case out of McAllen reported earlier this year was a false positive.
The confirmation came from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention.
It was a private lab that conducted the initial testing on patient zero. They concluded patient zero was positive for the Zika virus.
At the time, the city of McAllen and the Hidalgo County Health and Human Services were unable to determine if the case was localized or travel related.
On Tuesday, the Hidalgo County Health and Human Services said that case was never Zika. The false positive result was provided by the CDC confirms the diagnosis.
Hidalgo County Health and Human Services Director, Eddie Olivarez, said his department is learning more about the management of testing procedures.
He said given the false positive result, his office will back up private lab results with the CDC first before moving forward.
“There was no indications of localized Zika. Now we do have some traveler cases that we’re aware of. You can go to TexasZika.org and it’ll tell you all the cases by county and statewide and there’s still some investigations we’re looking at. But as of today, there is no confirmed case of localized Zika,” Olivarez said.
Olivarez said the Hidalgo County Health and Human Services will still continue taking extra precaution to ensure they track and detect any mosquitoes carrying the disease.
Currently, the Hidalgo County Health and Human Services are working with UTRGV, Texas A&M and the secretary of Health in the State of Tamaulipas to conduct further mosquito trapping and testing. So far, no mosquitoes caught have tested positive for the Zika virus.
Olivarez added the mosquito population relies heavily on weather conditions to grow. He said hot and rainy environments are where the mosquito population thrives.
He wants people to take precautions such as:
- Use insect repellents when you go outside.
- Wear long sleeves, pants and socks when you head outside.
- Empty out any nearby standing water.