DHH investigates 2 possible Zika virus cases in Louisiana
BATON ROUGE, LA (WVUE) - Louisiana health officials are investigating two presumptive cases of Zika virus in the state.
The Department of Health and Hospitals said the suspected cases are from people who recently traveled to a Caribbean country.
Lab tests performed on samples taken from the individuals were positive for Zika virus. The samples have been sent to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for more testing.
Neither of the patients required hospitalization, according to the DHH.
The two suspected cases are the only identified cases in the state, but DHH is monitoring several people who have recently traveled to the same region. None of those people are pregnant.
"We do not believe that Zika will spread from these suspected cases," DHH State Epidemiologist Dr. Raoult Ratard said. "Local transmission of Zika by mosquitoes is very unlikely, given the weather and environmental conditions. The chances of getting Zika from a mosquito in Louisiana are very small."
Zika virus is primarily transmitted to people through an infected mosquito bite. Mosquitos can become infected when they feed on a person who has the virus.
Health officials believe that the virus can be passed from an infected person to another person through mosquito bites only during the period that the viral infection is in the blood, which can last about a week.
For more information about Zika virus, visit http://www.cdc.gov/zika/.
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