Local News

Texas State Officials Foresee Zika Outbreak This Summer

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Texas health officials have identified 33 cases of the contagious Zika virus, and all of them are related to overseas travel. With upcoming summer temperatures rising and peak international travel season approaching, these cases are predicted to multiply, causing a large-scale outbreak in the Lone Star State, according to CBS DFW.

The Zika virus originates inside the Aedes species mosquito and is harder to ward off than your average house mosquito. Meaning, normal city-led eradication efforts are not likely to successfully eradicate the mosquito.

Specific hot zones for the Zika outbreak include Dallas, Houston, the Gulf Coast, and The Rio Grande Valley. These hot, humid climates are sanctuaries for mosquitos and are geographically situated near Latin America where the virus is originating.

“One of the big advantages that we have over other parts of the world in terms of Zika is our ability to see it coming and prepare for it,” said Department of State Health Services Commissioner John Hellerstedt.

Governor Greg Abbot took action, in case of an overwhelming outbreak, and created a disease task force. This force joins together highly acclaimed scientists and academics in order to create an eliminating vaccine.

Texas health officials don’t want to create unwarranted fear like they did with the minor Ebola outbreak, but they do want civilians to keep the Zika virus in mind during upcoming summer vacation plans.