The number of pregnant New Yorkers infected with Zika has now risen to 56, and the total number of people living in the city who have tested positive for the mosquito-borne virus has ticked past 530, according to a new report from the NYC Department of Health.
These cases are mostly linked to travel to a Zika-infected hot spot, and a few are from sexual transmission — including the first known case of a woman passing on the virus to a man. None are from local city mosquitoes, though health officials have doubled down on preventative measures — an increase in spraying, adding more mosquito traps, draining subway puddles and other standing water — to stop the potential spread of the disease. Sections of Miami are the only places in the continental United States where indigenous mosquitoes have passed on the disease to humans. Florida health officials confirmed that three more people have been infected, bringing the total number of local cases up to 46.
In July, the first baby with microcephaly, a Zika-related birth defect that shrinks the head and brains of babies, was born in the city. New York City health officials have continued to warn pregnant women or women trying to get pregnant from traveling to Zika-affected areas, including Miami Beach. New York City Blood Center said it will also begin screening for Zika, following the FDA’s recommendations, as a much-needed precaution.