Misinformation, hype and concern about a disease threat can spread much more rapidly than the disease itself. I want to help ease the hype created by provocative and persistent news coverage.
Unless you are traveling to an affected region, the Zika disease should not concern you. People who’ve returned from Zika-affected areas and are pregnant or experiencing symptoms of Zika illness should contact their healthcare provider.
We are a mobile society. Because people travel to and from places where Zika is spreading, our state and local public health system have expected to see imported cases of the virus.
Washington State Department of Health received confirmation Feb. 22 from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), that a man from Mason County is the first person in the state to test positive for Zika virus. The man recently traveled to the South Pacific before returning to Washington.
“The virus spreads through the bite of a type of mosquito we don’t have in Washington State, so it is very unlikely that Zika will spread widely here,” said Nigel Turner, director of the Communicable Disease Control division at Tacoma-Pierce County Health Department.
Find out more about Zika and other health concerns more relevant for Pierce County at www.tpchd.org/zika.