10 New Zika Virus Cases In Florida Leads To CDC Travel Warning

ABC News is reporting that Florida Governor Rick Scott has activated the emergency response team from the CDC after ten additional cases of the Zika virus were reported in the Miami area. This on the heels of the 4 confirmed cases in the same area last week which were deemed the first time the virus was transmitted via mosquito in the continental United States. Most cases within the United States are still the result of traveling to a country where the virus has an outbreak. The Florida Department of Health confirmed that the ten additional cases were contracted locally, likely by mosquito bites, the department has also tested around 2,300 people for the virus and found 372 infected. 

According to ABC News, six of the ten had no symptoms and were identified through a door to door investigation.

Fears of an outbreak are trying to be calmed by the Governor, who reminded Floridians that the state has a proven track record of success managing mosquito-borne viruses, citing previous outbreaks of dengue fever. Authorities say to drain standing water and wear bug spray.

The CDC has issued a warning that pregnant women should avoid unnecessary travel to the affected areas in Florida.

Zika Virus: 4 Possible Non-Travel-Related Cases In Florida

Blood donations in two counties in Florida have been halted by the FDA as there are now 4 possible cases of the Zika virus in the state. The big issue here is that signs are pointing to these being local cases, not travel related. Most Zika virus cases in the US have come from people traveling to countries in Latin and South America and bringing the virus back with them. The CDC has announced that evidence in these 4 new cases point to transmission via mosquitoes since they fit previous transmission patterns seen with other mosquito born illnesses, according to NBC news.

The FDA is suggesting that the counties outside of Miami-Dade and Broward should stop taking blood as a precaution. Until authorities can implement testing for each unit of blood collected or technology is developed that can kill pathogens in collected blood, the health authorities are doing what they can to keep the US blood supply safe.

In addition to mosquitos, the Zika virus is spread through blood transfusions and sex with an infected person.

Philadelphia Passes The Soda Tax

Philadelphia has become the first major American city to impose a soda tax, despite heavy lobbying from the beverage industry.


Out of 30 other cities and states where a soda tax had been proposed, so far only Berkeley California had approved it. The tax had been proposed before in Philadelphia and was turned down.

Democratic Mayor Jim Kenney plans to spend the nearly $90 million in tax revenues to pay for pre-kindergarten, community schools, and recreation centers.

Philadelphia city council gave final approval in a 13 to 4 vote today on the 1.5 cent-per-ounce tax on sugary and diet beverages.

The soda industry is expected to sue.