Florida Governor Rick Scott has announced that the Florida Department of Health (DOH) has discovered ten more people with the Zika virus.
According to Scott, those infected possibly contracted the virus through a mosquito bite. This is a clear indication that the Zika mosquito Aedes aegypti is currently present in Florida.
Now, the total number of people diagnosed with locally transmitted Zika virus has increased to 14. However, it was announced on Friday that the DOH still believes the active transmissions of the virus are only taking place in a small area in Miami-Dade County, just north of downtown.
ABC News reported that Governor Scott initiated the Emergency Response Team from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to help control the outbreak. This might be a subtle declaration of a “State of Emergency” in Florida.
“DOH has been testing individuals in three locations in Miami-Dade and Broward counties for possible local transmissions through mosquito bites,” said Governor Scott.
“Based on DOH’s investigations, two locations have been ruled out for possible local transmissions of the Zika virus.”
Among the ten people who carries the virus, six did not show symptoms. They were found during a door-to-door investigation.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and National Institutes of Health experts earlier suspected there could be a few local transmission of the virus in the U.S. They believed that in Florida, the Aedes aegypti mosquito is present. Other than that, many people travel to South or Central American countries where the Zika epidemic has been present for quite sometime now, according to the Florida Governor website.
Governor Scott said he had requested the CDC to activate their Emergency Response Team to help DOH in their investigation, as well as to research and sample collection process. According to him, the Emergency Response Team will have public health experts who would act as catalysts to their efforts.