Out of an abundance of caution, the Dallas Independent School District is closely monitoring developments regarding the Zika virus in Dallas County. To date, no cases of the Zika virus have been found in Dallas ISD students or staff members.
Dallas County Health and Human Services has received confirmation from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) of the Zika virus cases. The Zika virus is transmitted to people by mosquitoes and through sexual activity. The most common symptoms of Zika virus are fever, rash, joint pain, and conjunctivitis (red eyes). The illness is usually mild with symptoms lasting several days to a week.
County health officials advise individuals with symptoms to see a healthcare provider if they have visited an area where Zika virus is present or had sexual contact with a person who traveled to an area where Zika virus is present. There is no specific medication available to treat Zika virus and there is not a vaccine. The best way to avoid Zika virus is to avoid mosquito bites and to avoid sexual contact with a person who has Zika virus.
Dallas ISD uses several proactive cleaning procedures to ensure a healthy and safe environment for students and staff. The district will continue to monitor the situation and will provide updates related to the school system as necessary.
Per a notice from Dallas County Health and Human Services, there are currently no reports of Zika virus being locally-transmitted by mosquitoes in Dallas County. However, imported cases make local spread by mosquitoes possible because the mosquitoes that can transmit the virus are found locally. DCHHS advises recent travelers with Zika virus symptoms as well as individuals diagnosed with Zika virus protect themselves from further mosquito bites.
For more information:
Dallas County Health and Human Services: http://www.dallascounty.org/department/hhs/home.html
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: http://www.cdc.gov/zika/