Zika

Kyle Holsten / WLRN

Miami Herald photographer Carl Juste wanted the best possible shot of the mosquito control plane that was aerially spraying Miami Beach.

So just before 6 a.m. on Sunday, Sept. 18, he drove to the top of the parking garage on Collins Avenue and 16th Street, got out of his car and started taking pictures.

A measure signed into law by President Obama includes money to help combat the Zika virus. Florida is expected to be one of the areas to get a large amount of the funds. That’s in addition to the millions of dollars in state money Governor Rick Scott has already set aside in the Zika fight. But, questions now remain about when and how the funds will be distributed to help affected Floridians.

Men who may have been exposed to the Zika virus should wait at least six months before trying to conceive a child with a partner, regardless of whether they ever had any symptoms, federal health officials are recommending.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention had previously recommended that only men with Zika symptoms had to wait that long. Those who may have been exposed to Zika but never developed any symptoms were told to hold off on trying to conceive for just eight weeks.

Zika wasn't even on Dr. Sankar Swaminathan's mind when he first examined a severely ill 73-year-old man in a Salt Lake City hospital in June. The patient had just returned from a visit to Mexico when he suddenly fell violently ill.

"We were not thinking about Zika at all because Zika usually does not cause severe illness, in fact it almost never does," says Swaminathan, chief of the division of infectious diseases at the University of Utah.

Miami-Dade County

For months, health officials have been pleading with South Floridians to “drain and cover” --  especially people who live in Miami Beach, Miami-Dade’s remaining zika virus hot zone. And now the county has reported a case of locally-acquired dengue fever – another mosquito-borne virus.

Miami-Dade County Officials Identify Sites Of Traps With Zika Mosquitoes

Sep 28, 2016
Amanda Rabines / WLRN News

Nearly all of the locations in Miami Beach where traps captured mosquitoes carrying Zika virus in August and September are residential areas, though some are located near where lots of people gather, according to information released Wednesday by Miami-Dade officials.

Miami-Dade County on Wednesday will release the locations of mosquito traps that captured Zika-positive insects in Miami Beach, the result of a public dispute between state and local officials after the Miami Herald filed a lawsuit seeking the information.

The word came Tuesday evening, an hour after Gov. Rick Scott and Surgeon General Celeste Philip agreed that Miami-Dade can release the trap locations.

Carl Juste / Miami Herald

The mayors of Miami-Dade County and Miami Beach on Sunday accused the Florida Department of Health of lying after the state agency said last week that it never told local officials to hide the locations in Miami Beach where mosquitoes carrying the Zika virus were captured.

Associated Press

When San Francisco backup quarterback Colin Kaepernick started his protest against racial inequality and police brutality by taking a knee during the national anthem, he set off a firestorm. 

Since then, players from around the NFL and in other sports have joined in. Four Miami Dolphin players began protesting by taking a knee during the national anthem, led by running back Arian Foster. And it's even made its way to some high school football fields here in South Florida. 

Governor Scott Pumps More Money To Fight Zika

Sep 23, 2016
C.M. GUERRERO / EL NUEVO HERALD

More money is coming to fight Zika.

On Thursday Governor Rick Scott announced that he would allocate $25 million dollars in state funds to help fight the mosquito-borne virus. This is in addition to the $36 million he has already allocated for combating the virus, which can cause severe birth defects.

The governor says the state must focus on finding a vaccine to protect pregnant women and their developing babies. Thus the latest funding from Scott is slated to go toward research into finding a vaccine and a more cost-effective way to test for the disease.

CDC

Miami’s Wynwood neighborhood may be celebrating this week’s lifting of the suspected Zika transmission map, but Dr. Tom Frieden of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is urging people in Miami-Dade County not to let their guards down.

C.M. Guerrero / El Nuevo Herald

 

Good news for Wynwood residents and businesses: State and local officials said Monday the Zika virus is no longer being locally transmitted in the area.

It’s good news to Florida’s Congressional Delegation and Governor Rick Scott that Congress could be close to striking a deal on funding efforts to combat the Zika virus. Florida just passed the 800 mark for the amount of cases reported to health officials. But, Florida leaders are a bit split on how that funding should be accomplished.

THE TIMES/RICHARD POHLE

This week on The Florida Roundup: 

How much or how little the state of Florida is  telling the public about the spread of the Zika virus has come under scrutiny. So why are some saying the Florida Department of Health's daily Zika update may not be providing the complete picture? 

Miami Herald

I’m the health reporter here at WLRN, but a couple of weeks ago, I declined to go to a town hall meeting in Miami Beach about the city’s very new status as a Zika transmission zone.

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