About the Zika Virus
Since travel and health is always unpredictable, Northwest Anesthesia Seminars, Northwest Seminars and Northwest World Wide Travel highly recommend the purchase of comprehensive travel insurance for all trips, specifically a plan that will let you cancel for any reason.
Zika virus is spread to people through mosquito bites. The most common symptoms of Zika virus disease are fever, rash, joint pain, and conjunctivitis (red eyes). The illness is usually mild with symptoms lasting from several days to a week. Severe disease requiring hospitalization is uncommon.
In May 2015, the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) issued an alert regarding the first confirmed Zika virus infection in Brazil. The outbreak in Brazil led to reports of Guillain-Barré syndrome and pregnant women giving birth to babies with birth defects and poor pregnancy outcomes.
Women who are pregnant (in any trimester) or who are trying to become pregnant may want to consider postponing travel to any area where Zika virus transmission is ongoing.
If you must travel to one of these areas, talk to your doctor first and strictly follow steps to prevent mosquito bites during your trip.
In response, CDC has issued travel notices for people traveling to regions and certain countries where Zika virus transmission is ongoing.
More information on the Zika Virus can be found here:
What can travelers do to prevent Zika?
There is currently no vaccine to prevent or medicine to treat Zika. Travelers can protect themselves by preventing mosquito bites:
• Cover exposed skin by wearing long-sleeved shirts and long pants.
• Use EPA-registered insect repellents containing DEET, picaridin, oil of lemon eucalyptus (OLE), or IR3535. Always use as directed.
• Pregnant and breastfeeding women can use all EPA-registered insect repellents, including DEET, according to the product label.
• Most repellents, including DEET, can be used on children aged > 2 months.
• Use permethrin-treated clothing and gear (such as boots, pants, socks, and tents). You can buy pre-treated clothing and gear or treat them yourself.
• Stay and sleep in screened-in or air-conditioned rooms.
If you feel sick and think you may have Zika:
• Talk to your doctor or nurse if you develop a fever with a rash, joint pain, or red eyes. Tell him or her about your travel.
• Take medicine, such as acetaminophen or paracetamol, to relieve fever and pain.
• Do not take aspirin, products containing aspirin, or other nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs such as ibuprofen.
• Get lots of rest and drink plenty of liquids.
• Prevent additional mosquito bites to avoid spreading the disease.
Zika Virus in Pregnancy (Interim Recommendations):
Zika virus can be spread from a pregnant woman to her unborn baby. There have been reports of a serious birth defect of the brain called microcephaly and other poor pregnancy outcomes in babies of mothers who were infected with Zika virus while pregnant. Knowledge of the link between Zika and these outcomes is evolving, but until more is known, CDC recommends special precautions for the following groups:
Women who are pregnant (in any trimester):
• Consider postponing travel to any area where Zika virus transmission is ongoing.
• If you must travel to one of these areas, talk to your doctor first and strictly follow steps to prevent mosquito bites during your trip.
Women who are trying to become pregnant:
• Before you travel, talk to your doctor about your plans to become pregnant and the risk of Zika virus infection.
• Strictly follow steps to prevent mosquito bitesduring your trip.
Specific areas where Zika virus transmission is ongoing are often difficult to determine and are likely to change over time. As more information becomes available, this travel notice will be updated. Please check back frequently for the most up-to-date recommendations.