The CDC Has Added This Caribbean Nation To Its Zika Travel Alert

zika-virus-grows-in-martinique
A billboard reading ‘You have a guest…’ and featuring a picture of a mosquito as part of a campaign to fight against the Zika virus in Les Trois-Ilets, in the French overseas department of Martinique. (Photo credit: NICOLAS DERNE/AFP/Getty Images)

By NAN Staff Writer

News Americas, WASHINGTON, D.C., Weds. Sept. 28, 201: The Centers for Disease Control this week issued a travel advisory on another Caribbean nation because of the Zika virus.

The CDC is recommending that travelers to Saint Kitts and Nevis protect themselves from mosquito bites because of the  Zika virus. They also warned pregnant women not to travel to the islands.

“If you must travel, talk to your doctor first and strictly follow steps to prevent mosquito bites during your trip,” the CDC statement issued on September 26th warned while adding: “If you have a partner who lives in or has traveled to Saint Kitts and Nevis, either use condoms (or other barriers to prevent infection) or do not have sex (vaginal, anal, or oral) during your pregnancy.”

They also cautioned people who have traveled to Saint Kitts and Nevis and have a pregnant partner to use condoms or not have sex (vaginal, anal, or oral) during the pregnancy.

Travelers are also encouraged to protect themselves from mosquito bites; use mosquito repellants with DEET as there is no vaccine currently for the disease and Zika can be transmitted by sex.

Many people infected with the Zika virus do not get sick but among those who do develop symptoms, the sickness is usually mild, with symptoms that last for several days to a week. The Guillain-Barré syndrome (GBS) is a rare disorder that can cause muscle weakness and paralysis for a few weeks to several months.  Current CDC research suggests that GBS is strongly associated with Zika but only a small proportion of people with recent Zika virus infection get GBS. Most people fully recover from GBS, but some have permanent damage.

Other Caribbean nations already on the CDC travel alert list include:

  • Guadeloupe
  • Bonaire
  • Curacao
  • French Guiana
  • Trinidad & Tobago
  • Saint Lucia
  • Cuba
  • Turks & Caicos
  • Belize
  • Saint Martin
  • Sint Maarten
  • Puerto Rico
  • Martinique
  • Aruba
  • Saint Vincent and the Grenadines
  • Jamaica
  • Suriname
  • Haiti
  • Guyana
  • U.S. Virgin Islands
  • Saba
  • Antigua & Barbuda
  • St. Barts
  • Dominica
  • Anguilla
  • St. Eustacius
  • Grenada
  • The Cayman Islands.