Zika & Spring Break Travel: What Travelers Need to Know

Posted on Behalf of Julie Graham of the Department of Health

Zika and spring break travel: What travelers need to know

If you’re planning to travel for spring break, find out if your destination is one of the many popular travel spots where Zika virus is being spread by mosquitos by checking here: http://www.cdc.gov/zika/geo 

While only women who are pregnant or trying to become pregnant should consider postponing travel to Zika-affected areas, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have an “alert level 2”in effect, urging all travelers to protect themselves from mosquito bites. Sexual transmission of Zika virus from a male partner is possible, so people are also encouraged to use condoms while traveling or with a man who recently returned from traveling to a Zika affected area.

To prevent Zika or other mosquito-spread diseases, travelers should avoid mosquito bites:

  • Use EPA-registered insect repellents containing DEET, picaridin, oil of lemon eucalyptus (OLE), or IR3535. Always use as directed.  –moved to first
  • Cover skin – wear long-sleeved shirts and long pants.
  • Most repellents, can be used safely by most people, but be sure to check the label and follow instructions.
  • 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.

For more information visit www.doh.wa.gov/zika

Julie Graham
Strategic Communications Consultant
Center for Public Affairs
Washington State Department of Health
360-236-4078 | www.doh.wa.gov

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