In January the Van Buren/Cass District Health Department participated in a tech-conference to initiate preventative action against ZIKA in Michigan. Host of the conference included the Michigan Department of Health & Human Services, and the Emerging & Zoonotic Infectious Disease Section, along with several other local health departments.
The first step in prevention is surveillance. Multiple health department employees attended an educational conference in Lansing with our partners to gain specific knowledge, goals, and guidelines of the mosquito surveillance program. Our district’s summer program will consist of trapping and monitoring mosquito species across a 10 locations. You may notice traps around the county, or at a local park. This monitoring will continue throughout the mosquito season about 14 weeks. Our results will determine if there is a need for further preventive measures.
Only two mosquito species transmit the Zika virus (neither is native in Michigan). Most of the threat is to travelers returning from more tropical destinations where the virus is prevalent. The virus is mild in most, but is dangerous to pregnant women increasing the risk of birth defects like microcephaly. As of our third week of surveillance no results have been found that would suggest further action is needed. We will continue our program while also working with our partners to determine what the best actions are for the health of our Michigan residents.
Mosquito Surveillance in Progress
On behalf of the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services, the Van Buren/Cass District Health Department is conducting a mosquito trapping program for species surveillance. This program is designed to monitor what level of threat Michigan may face in regards to the Zika Virus and other mosquito transmitted diseases.
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Mosquito Bite Prevention