As spring quickly turns to summer in the Sunshine State, Florida health officials on Friday confirmed one new case of Zika virus in Miami-Dade County, raising the statewide total to 88 people who have contracted the infectious disease since February.
Miami-Dade has the most Zika cases in the state with 36 people infected, according to the count kept by the Florida Department of Health. Nearly all of Florida’s cases were acquired by people traveling outside the country, except for one case of sexual transmission in Polk County.
Florida has reported Zika infections in five pregnant women, who are considered to be at greatest risk because of a conclusive causal link between the virus and microcephaly, a condition in which a newborn’s head is smaller than expected, which can lead to developmental issues.
This week, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced that scientists have concluded there is enough evidence to establish that Zika causes microcephaly and other severe fetal brain defects.
The finding does not mean that all women who contract Zika during pregnancy will have babies with fetal brain defects. During the current Zika outbreak, some infected women have delivered babies that appear to be healthy.
Also this week, the CDC reported the first transmission of Zika virus from an infected man to a sexual partner through anal sex, based on a case in Texas.
There have been 358 confirmed cases of Zika in the continental United States as of April 13, including 31 pregnant women, according to the CDC. There is no vaccine for Zika, which generally causes a rash, fever and joint pain that can last from one week to 10 days, according to the CDC.
Zika virus cases in Florida as of April 15
Number of Cases
Cases involving pregnant women*
* Counties of pregnant women not included
Source: Florida Department of Health