Manatee resident diagnosed with Chikungunya Fever - WFLA News Channel 8

Manatee resident diagnosed with Chikungunya Fever

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Manatee is the most recent Tampa Bay county to have a confirmed case of Chikungunya Fever.

Manatee County health officials announced on Thursday that a person who had recently traveled to the Dominican Republic tested positive for Chikungunya Fever.

The announcement brings the total number of people infected in Tampa Bay to six. Three people in Hillsborough County, one in Manatee County, one in Pasco County and one person in Polk County have been infected.

Chikungunya is a disease spread by bites from infected mosquitoes. Statewide concern around the disease increased in May, when Florida health officials began to learn of cases occurring in residents across the state, following travel to Caribbean Islands.

New mosquito-borne virus in Tampa Bay area

There have been no reports of anyone acquiring Chikungunya within the United States. However, health officials say there is the possibility that if a person is infected and bitten by a mosquito, that mosquito may later spread the infection locally by biting another person. The breed of mosquito known to transmit Chikungunya is active both day and night.

"Avoiding mosquito bites is the key to preventing infection with Chikungunya and other mosquito-borne diseases," said Dr. Jennifer Bencie, DOH-Manatee Administrator.

"Floridians and visitors are encouraged to take precautionary measures to help reduce the chance of being bitten. Remember to drain standing water, cover all skin with repellant or clothing, and ensure open windows and doors have functioning screens."

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