UCF is joining the Florida Department of Health in monitoring the status of the Zika virus, which is carried by mosquitoes.

There have been no reported cases of the virus acquired in Florida, but there have been cases of Florida travelers who have acquired the virus in other countries.

Common symptoms are fever, rash, joint pain and conjunctivitis, with conditions lasting up to a week. Brazil has reported an increase of birth defects related to the virus. There is no vaccine or medicine to treat the disease.

The Health Department advises these precautions to reduce mosquito bites:

  • Drain standing water to stop mosquitoes from breeding
  • Wear protective clothing when mosquitoes are present
  • Cover doors and windows with screens
  • Use Environmental Protection Agency-registered insect repellants, which are evaluated for safety and effectiveness
  • Sleep under a mosquito net while traveling overseas or outside
  • Treat clothing with permethrin or buy permethrin-treated items
  • Women who are pregnant or trying to become pregnant should consider postponing travel to any area where the Zika-virus transmission is ongoing. If they must travel to one of these areas, they should talk to their doctor first and follow steps to prevent mosquito bites during the trip.

    For more information on Zika visit  http://www.floridahealth.gov/diseases-and-conditions/zika-virus/ or https://shs.sdes.ucf.edu/.

    For a list of countries and territories with active Zika virus transmission visit https://www.cdc.gov/zika/.

    Anyone with additional questions may call UCF Student Health Services at 407-823-0838.