Report outlines Zika preparedness efforts in North Carolina

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The disease is primarily transmitted by mosquitoes

The Zika virus and how to deal with it was a topic of discussion Tuesday at a joint legislative committee meeting at the legislative building.

During the meeting, the Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Rick Brajer delivered a report to the joint legislative oversight committee that outlines Zika preparedness efforts by DHHS.

"We're well prepared and there's really no reason to be concerned," Brajer said.

There are still only five confirmed cases of Zika in North Carolina, including the first reported in Wake County last week.


"Our message is that in a state of 10 million people, we anticipate more cases, and the why we made it a reportable disease, and that helps us track the virus," State Health Director Dr. Randall Williams said.

Officials also keeping an eye on mosquitoes here since the virus is transmitted through their bites if they are infected.

"And so we are contracting with three academic entomologists," Williams said. "In addition, we are hiring three entomologists within the state to help us track the presence of the aedes aegypti mosquito. We think we have some of those mosquitoes. The predominant mosquito in North Carolina is not the aedes aegypti mosquito."

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