Florida reports two more local chikungunya infections

Florida health officials yesterday announced two more locally acquired chikungunya cases, lifting the total to four.

One of the cases is the first to be reported in St Lucie County, in an adult who lives in a residential area north of Dan McCarty School in Fort Pierce, the Florida Department of Health (FDH) said in a statement. The patient did not need to be hospitalized and is recovering. The county’s mosquito control department launched aggressive efforts on Jul 27 in response to the new case.

The other case is Palm Beach County’s second, according to a separate FDH statement. No details were available about the patient. The confirmation of the second infection prompted the county to raise the mosquito warning level from “advisory” to “alert,” signifying that the virus is likely in the mosquito population.

On Jul 17 the FDH announced its first locally acquired chikungunya cases, the first such infections on the US mainland. One was in Dade County, in addition to Palm Beach County’s first case.

Florida also has reported 115 travel-related cases, most of them linked to destinations in the Caribbean region, which is experiencing a large epidemic. At the national level, 398 travel-linked cases have been reported to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.



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