Fourth imported case of Zika virus confirmed

The Cayman Islands’ fourth imported case of the Zika virus was confirmed Wednesday by public health officials.

The case involved a woman who traveled abroad between July 4 and July 8 and who reported the onset of symptoms from the virus around July 14.

So far, no locally transmitted cases of Zika have been reported. All four have involved individuals who traveled overseas and contracted the virus there.

“We are aware of this fourth case of Zika and are taking all the necessary precautions to stop the local transmission of the virus,” said Mosquito Research and Control Unit Director Bill Petrie. “This includes traditional insecticide spraying, and now we also have the additional public health program in West Bay using genetically modified mosquitoes.”

Mr. Petrie said the goal in both efforts is to reduce the population of Aedes aegypti mosquitoes which transmit Zika, as well as dengue fever and chikungunya.

As of last week, 67 countries had reported evidence of mosquito-borne Zika virus transmission. The vast majority have reported the virus transmissions only since last year. These include Antigua and Barbuda, the Turks and Caicos Islands and the U.S. state of Florida. The U.S. government is also monitoring a possible transmission case in Utah.