25 Pregnant Women Infected with Zika in Rajasthan, India

Rajasthan Indian health officials are changing insecticides to kill mosquitoes that spread Zika, dengue, and chikungunya viruses

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The number of people infected with the Zika virus in Rajasthan, India rose to 106 on October 18, 2018, reported NDTV.  

On September 22, 2018, Rajasthan recorded its first case of Zika virus infection after a woman tested positive in Jaipur. 

Rajasthan is a northern Indian state, bordering with the country of Pakistan.   

Of the total affected people, 25 are pregnant women, according to reporting by India Express.  

The Indian Health Department has advised pregnant women not to visit the Zika affected areas. 

Additionally, the 20 new confirmed Zika cases were from Jaipur and two neighboring districts. 

Indian Health Minister JP Nadda said his ministry was coordinating with the Rajasthan government on a daily basis. 

"A team of experts has reached Jaipur to change the insecticides which are being used in the city to kill mosquitoes that spread Zika, dengue, and chikungunya viruses as a part of the integrated mosquito management programme," said Nadda. 

In India, the 1st Zika outbreak was reported in Ahmedabad in January 2017 and the 2nd in Tamil Nadu's Krishnagiri district in July 2017. Both these outbreaks were successfully contained through intensive surveillance and vector management. 

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The Zika disease is under surveillance of the Union Health Ministry although it is no longer a Public Health Emergency of International Concern under the World Health Organization (WHO) notification since November 18, 2016.

But, in the USA, the Zika virus is considered an ‘emerging disease’ currently being reported by 90 countries, says the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). 

As of October 3, 2018, the USA has reported 46 and the US Territories have reported 98 Zika cases. 

Symptoms of Zika virus infection are similar to other viral infections such as dengue and include fever, skin rashes, conjunctivitis, muscle and joint pain, malaise, and headache. 

During August 2018, the CDC updated Alert Level 2, Practice Enhanced Precautions, notices regarding Zika outbreaks in 90 countries. 

Since there are no FDA-approved vaccines for the prevention of the Zika virus, these travel alerts are important. 

‘Given a large number of international travelers, it is critical that Zika prevention messaging, surveillance and outreach continue, especially as it pertains to women traveling while pregnant,” says the CDC. 

To schedule a pre-trip vaccination review with a local pharmacy, please visit Vax-Before-Travel.