Are local hospitals prepared for the Zika Virus?


     The West Virginia Health and Human Resources has released an alert to all medical professionals updating them on the Zika Virus.  59News is talking with a nurse at the maternity ward at Princeton Community Hospital about the disease.
     The Zika Virus has been confirmed in 19 states. West Virginia is not one of them, but the mosquito that carries the virus is here in the mountain state. Tera Dillow, an RN at Princeton Community Hospital, says not knowing is the scariest part, “We’re all trying to learn more about the virus itself, and the areas and ways it’s transmitted.” All of staff at Princeton Community Hospital is trying to educate themselves and their patients as quickly as possible, but details on the Zika Virus continue to evolve. Tuesday, doctors announced one person in Dallas, Texas had contracted the disease through sexual contact.
     Here in West Virginia, no one has been diagnosed, but the possibility of it coming to the mountain state is not unrealistic, “We know that we do have the mosquitoes that can transmit the virus in our area, as of right now, we don’t think the mosquitoes have the virus, so it’s something that if people become infected with the virus their wanting people to not be bitten by the mosquitoes in our area.”
     If you have flu like symptoms, and have traveled you are urged to see a doctor immediately. If you are pregnant you are urged to be even more careful, because a lot more is at risk than feeling like you have the flu, “The things that we watch for if you are pregnant, it can cause Microcephaly with a baby. Microcephaly can be caught on prenatal ultra sounds, so if anyone has been in an area affected by the Zika Viruses, then you should let you health care providers know.”
     Dillow told us they’ve always asked pregnant women if they have traveled outside of the area, now a follow up question will be about mosquito bites and flu symptoms.

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