NAPA (KRON) — Health officials confirmed that a Napa County woman who traveled to Central America became the Bay Area’s first Zika virus.
According to the Napa County Public Health Division, the case is a pregnant woman and is not showing symptoms of Zika virus infection at this time.
Officials are not identifying the patient “to protect the identity of the woman and her unborn child.”
The case is not a threat to public health, officials say, but they would not disclose when the woman traveled to Central America or what country or countries, she visited.
“There is no active transmission of Zika virus in Napa County, and the two kinds of mosquitos that transmit the virus have not been found here,” said Dr. Karen Relucio, Napa County Health Officer. “Anyone who is planning to travel to a country with active Zika virus transmission should consult with their healthcare provider before leaving, especially if they are pregnant or are considering becoming pregnant.”
But the mosquito could potentially come and breed here, according to Wes Maffei, manager of the Napa County Mosquito Abatement District.
The mosquito has been found in Southern California. Maffei said the district has been setting out traps for the last year to check for the presence of the two mosquitoes.
“We’re still doing that type of work,” he said.
The mosquitoes breed in standing water, including places such as old tires and gutters.
Napa County Public Health says they are working together with local healthcare providers to actively test for cases of Zika virus among pregnant women who have traveled to countries with Zika virus transmission or who have sexual partner(s) that have traveled to countries with Zika virus.
Public Health officials expect to see more cases as testing for Zika virus continues.
Health officials are especially concerned about the effects on pregnant women because the virus may cause birth defects. The name of the woman, identified only as a Napa County resident, is not being released.
Public health officials expect to find more cases of the virus as testing continues. Health officials are testing pregnant women who have been to countries where the Zika virus is being transmitted or who have had sex with people who have been to those countries.
Pregnant women or women who may become pregnant are being told to avoid traveling to places where the virus has been found. Pregnant women who have had sexual partners who have traveled to places with the virus are being told to avoid sex with that partner or have their partner use condoms until giving birth, health officials said.
Pregnant women or their partners who must travel to places with the virus should take precautions to avoid mosquito bites, according to health officials.
Napa County Public Health continues to promote Zika virus prevention messages:
• Women who are pregnant or may become pregnant are advised to avoid travel to areas with Zika.
• Women who are pregnant and have sexual partner(s) that have traveled to areas with Zika are advised to abstain from sex or use condoms consistently for the duration of the pregnancy.
• Pregnant women or sexual partner(s) of pregnant women who cannot avoid travel to areas with Zika are advised to take precautions to avoid mosquito bites (Spanish).