Health & Wellness

Zika Virus Targeted by Middlesex County Agencies

MIDDLESEX COUNTY, NJ - The Middlesex County Mosquito Extermination Commission, in conjunction with the Middlesex County Department of Public Safety and Health’s Office of Health Services and its Environmental Health Division, is taking preventive actions to protect residents from the Zika virus. 

Zika virus is spread to people primarily through the bite of an infected Aedes species mosquito.  Mosquitoes that spread Zika virus are aggressive daytime biters.  They can also bite at night.

Locally transmitted cases of Zika by mosquitoes have not been identified in the United States, although the potential for local transmission exists, as Aedes mosquitoes are present in many states.  Mosquitoes are not active during the winter months in New Jersey.

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Middlesex County residents looking for information about the virus may go to the Middlesex County website at www.co.middlesex.nj.us and search “Zika.”

This web page will be updated as necessary. Information also will be shared through the County’s social media channels: Facebook (Middlesex County NJ) and Twitter (@MiddlesexCntyNJ).

The Department will continue to promote community health education and recycling programs. Department staff will provide information to partners, businesses and other stakeholders about the importance of reducing locations where mosquitoes can breed.

Additionally, fact sheets and posters will be made available and distributed to municipalities within the County.

Freeholder Director Ronald G. Rios said: “Middlesex County officials are committed to protecting the health and safety of all of our residents through a variety of existing services, community partnerships and outreach programs. Prevention is a key element to keeping our citizens safe. That is why we have begun our efforts now.”

Freeholder H. James Polos, Chairman of the Public Safety and Health Committee said: “It is important to educate all who live and work here about this disease so that everyone can take the proper precautions to prevent the transmission of the disease, prevent mosquito bites and prevent mosquito breeding sources.”

The most common symptoms of Zika virus are fever, rash, joint pain and red eyes (conjunctivitis). The illness is usually mild with symptoms lasting for several days to a week.

There is no vaccine to prevent or medicine to treat Zika.

Outbreaks of Zika have been reported in tropical Africa, Southeast Asia, the Pacific Islands and most recently in the Americas. For additional information about areas with Zika virus, visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website at: http://www.cdc.gov/zika/geo/index.html.

Middlesex County Mosquito Commission Superintendent Dr. Deepak Matadha said: “Protect yourself and your family from mosquito bites by using an Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)-registered insect repellent containing DEET, oil of lemon eucalyptus, picaridin, or IR 3535. You and your neighbors can help us in our mission to control the mosquito population by making every possible effort to eliminate sources of standing water around your home or place of business.” 

Water collects in open-topped recycling and garbage bins, upside down garbage can lids, bird feeders, on top of pool covers, in old tires and other areas around the house or building.

If you have a mosquito problem, or if you need additional advice or information, please call the Middlesex County Mosquito Extermination Commission at 732-549-0665.

For more information about Zika Virus visit: www.co.middlesex.nj.us and search “Zika.”

This site includes fact sheets, posters, information for travelers, information for pregnant women, mosquito bite prevention, reducing standing water and links to other state and federal web sites.

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