I would have never thought that after writing about Zika several months ago, concern about Zika would still be the rage. With Chanukkah and winter breaks looming, the telephone calls from patients requesting guidance are coming in daily, fast and furious. Here’s some information that may help you with planning trips to the Sunshine state.

Vaccine development for Zika is underway at the National Institute of Health (NIH). However, nothing is imminent.

Alas, there has been no Zika vaccine to date, mainly because scientists long assumed the virus was so benign that it wasn’t worth the resources required to investigate treatment. Only recently has Zika become more widely examined. In fact, the connection between Zika and microcephaly—a severe neurological birth defect—is relatively new. Many people who get infected will never know it, and if they start showing signs of infection, such as a rash, red eyes, fever or joint pain, doctors have little to offer other than advice to stay hydrated or take Tylenol as needed.

What’s the best way to avoid Zika?


The areas in question and other Zika-related information is readily available on the website of the Center for Disease Control — https://www.cdc.gov/zika.

If you choose to travel to Zika-affected areas, please do the following:

  1. Purchase travel insurance. This is because you never know.
  2. Study the CDC’s website for information on how to cover up and which insect repellents are recommended.
  3. Follow the CDC’s guidelines.
  4. Daven.

I am happy to be there for my patients and if people have questions in general. However, I don’t have a crystal ball to look into the future to see what the Zika situation in Florida will be next month or at any time.

Perhaps a ski trip might be in order this year: There’s no Zika on the slopes.

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