Travel-related Zika Virus case confirmed in Canyon County

Posted at 3:21 PM, Sep 13, 2016
and last updated 2016-09-14 05:57:51-04

Southwest District Health officials have confirmed that a Canyon County man in his 40s has tested positive for the Zika virus.

Public health officials say it's unlikely that you'll contract Zika if you plan on staying in Idaho

"We don't have the mosquitoes that carry Zika Virus here in Idaho, so it's pretty unlikely someone would pick it up from a local mosquito," Epidemiologist Randi Pedersen says.

Pedersen says contracting Zika is much more likely if you travel to a tropical region.

"The gentleman in Canyon County that was infected with Zika did acquire it by traveling internationally, so definitely it wasn’t picked up here," Pedersen says.

If you have Zika you may notice symptoms such as a fever, rash, or redness in your eyes, but Pedersen says it's pretty uncommon that people will have symptoms at all, even when they're first infected.

The biggest health threat the Zika Virus poses affects pregnant women.

"They can transmit Zika Virus to their babies and the babies can have severe developmental problems," Pedersen says.

If you do plan to travel to an area where zika is prevalent, it's important to take precautions to keep yourself from mosquito bites.

Though this is the first confirmed case of Zika in Canyon County, it is the third case confirmed in Idaho. All three of the cases were contracted through travel outside of the U.S.