Miami-Dade Gets $7M More To Fight Spread Of Zika Virus

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MIAMI (CBSMiami) — Miami-Dade County is getting more money to fight the spread of the Zika virus – linked to severe birth defects.

The Florida Department of Health (DOH) will allocate $7.4 million in additional state funding to the county which has already received $12.6 million in state funds to fight to mosquito-borne virus. The funding will be used to step up mosquito control efforts like adding staff and increase spraying.

As of Tuesday, there was one new non-travel related case of the virus linked to Miami-Dade County. The department is investigating where the person was exposed.

At last check, there were 147 non-travel related cases and 728 travel-related cases. Of those, 104 of the cases involve pregnant women.

Zika 101: Prevent Spread By Protecting Yourself

Florida Governor Rick Scott has authorized $61.2 million in state funds for Zika preparedness since June but says more needs to be done.

“We are working to aggressively fight this virus, but it is clear that more resources are needed to keep Floridians safe. While Congress passed funding to fight Zika, we have not received any yet in Florida. Today, I directed DOH to immediately allocate $7 million in state funding to Miami-Dade County to ensure the community can continue aggressively fighting this virus, ” said Governor Scott on Tuesday.

The governor says they still have multiple “outstanding requests” to the Obama administration for important Zika preparedness efforts and they need to be addressed.

“Every day that passes that Florida does not receive funding or resources means more time is lost from researching this virus and protecting pregnant women and their developing babies,” said Scott.

Scott says some items that are outstanding including:

  • An additional 10,000 Zika prevention kits requested on August 19th
  • The CDC to match Florida’s $25 million investment in Zika research that was requested on September 28th
  • The CDC to accelerate their testing process requested on September 28th
  • A detailed plan from the Obama administration on how they want Florida to work with FEMA since Zika has become mosquito-borne requested first on June 1st.

Following wet weather brought by Hurricane Matthew, Florida residents are asked to do their part by removing any standing water which could become a breeding haven for mosquitoes. Also, for those going outdoors, make sure to use mosquito repellant.

So far, the local transmission zones in Miami-Dade County are the following:

  • Miami Beach Area – 28th Street to the north, 8th Street to the south, intercoastal water to the west and the Atlantic Ocean to the east.

In Broward County, aerial spraying for mosquito larvae that was scheduled for Wednesday in parts of Dania Beach, Lauderhill, and Fort Lauderdale, has been postponed due to adverse weather conditions. It may be rescheduled for Friday morning.

Click here for more information on the Zika virus or here for more Zika-related stories.

More from Giovanna Maselli

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