First Southern California child born with defect caused by Zika virus

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A baby born recently in San Diego County is the first in the region to suffer devastating birth defects after the infant’s mother contracted Zika virus while traveling abroad.

Public-health officials said the case, announced Tuesday by the county government, is a tragic reminder that the risk of Zika infection continues in warmer climates even though mosquitoes are currently dormant here in San Diego.

“(While) there is currently no local spread of Zika, we still want to remember that we all have to be vigilant in protecting ourselves and our community from diseases like this,” said Dr. Sayone Thihalolipavan, a deputy public health officer with the county Health and Human Services Agency.

Pregnant women are urged to avoid going to countries where mosquitoes are actively transmitting the virus. Those who absolutely must travel to such locations are recommended to strictly follow guidelines designed to prevent mosquito bites, from using an effective repellent to wearing long-sleeved shirts and pants.


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