US ties 4 Zika cases in Florida to local mosquitoes


MIAMI, Florida: Four cases of Zika virus in Florida are likely the first transmitted locally by mosquitoes in the United States, officials said Friday, marking a new phase in the fast-growing pandemic. Until now, more than 1,600 cases of Zika—which can cause birth defects—have been recorded in the mainland United States but most were brought in by people who had become infected while traveling, with a smaller number transmitted by sexual contact. “As we have anticipated, Zika is now here,” said Tom Frieden, chief of the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), speaking to reporters in a conference call. The Florida Department of Health said that over the past two weeks, investigators have determined “a high likelihood exists” that four suspected non-travel cases in Miami-Dade and Broward County “are the result of local transmission.”



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