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Should people in Johnson County take any steps to prevent getting Zika?

Yes. Because the mosquitoes that carry Zika virus can be found in our area, we need to take special measures to prevent bites and mosquito breeding.

  • Wear EPA-registered insect repellents, long sleeves and pants to prevent mosquito bites. When used as directed, these insect repellents are proven safe and effective even for pregnant and breastfeeding women. During the day, apply sunscreen first and then the repellent to exposed skin.
  • Cover windows and doors with intact screens. Use your air conditioning if you have it.
  • Empty and scrub out items that hold standing water in and around your home. Flower pots, birdbaths, gutters/downspouts, grill covers, kiddie pools, buckets, cans and discarded tires can become a breeding ground for mosquitoes.

Zika virus infection is a serious risk for pregnant women who travel to areas where outbreaks are occurring and who have sex partners who have traveled to these areas. Women who are pregnant or who want to get pregnant should avoid travel to Zika-affected areas if possible and both women and men who do travel to areas where the Zika virus is spreading should take precautions to prevent infection from this virus. That means strictly following steps to prevent mosquito bites during the trip. Men and women who live in or travel to areas with Zika can prevent the spread of Zika through sex by using condoms and other barriers every time they have sex, or by not having sex during the risk period (see CDC's website for details regarding duration of precautions). To be effective, condoms must be used consistently and correctly. The CDC has guidance on preventing sexual transmission.