Zika in America

Pregnant women in Miami’s Zika-infected neighborhood are taking precautions but staying put

A woman holds her baby after being given a can of insect repellent by a Miami police officer on August 2, 2016 in Miami, Florida. (Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

For pregnant women in Miami, choosing the right crib and car seat and making the ultrasound appointment can be stressful enough, without the recent added strain of worrying about the Zika virus.

“You can take every step you can trying to take care of yourself with your diet and exercise and going to your prenatal appointments, but now I have to worry about mosquitoes and going outside,” Jessica Ardente, who is four months pregnant, said this week, after more than a dozen people in Miami were diagnosed with the mosquito-borne virus.

Ardente happens to live in the one-square-mile neighborhood of Miami where the Zika virus is believed to exist, in a section called Wynwood. She says she will be careful while going about her day-to-day life in Wynwood, including wearing bug spray, long pants, and long sleeves, but she doesn’t want to leave. The Centers for Disease Control issued a travel warning for pregnant women to avoid the area. Ardente, like many women showing up at hospitals and clinics in the area, is going in for more frequent blood and urine tests now. Doctors are dispensing pregnancy kits with strong bug spray as well as condoms and tablets to kill insects in standing water.

No pregnant women in Miami have been diagnosed with Zika yet, but abroad, one pregnant U.S. military service member has, in addition to 40 other service members who are not pregnant, according to NBC News. Military officials said most of the cases were transmitted during personal travel to one of the affected countries, and did not release details not he pregnant service member.

Read the full story at The Associated Press.

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