As we hit the first official days of spring, anticipation builds over of the threat of Zika virus cases spread by mosquito bites in Texas.
Beginning around May 1, Texas Medicaid and CHIP once again will make mosquito repellent a covered benefit for certain patients to help combat the Zika virus.
DSHS issued a health advisory last month following the diagnosis of primary amebic meningoencephalitis (PAM) in a Texas teenager, the first case reported in Texas this year. DSHS reminds you to be aware of the possibility of Naegleria fowleri infection in patients presenting with bacterial meningitis-like symptoms and recent freshwater exposure.
Texas has experienced a large number of cyclosporiasis cases during the past four summers. DSHS reports at least some of the Texas cases in 2012–15 were associated with consumption of fresh cilantro imported from Mexico. Rapid reporting to public health authorities, enabling prompt investigation to identify possible common exposures, is essential to preventing additional cases of cyclosporiasis this year.
Texas has more declared disasters than any other state and physicians have been an integral part of preparing and responding to these hazards. But preparedness for public health emergencies in particular call for a strong physician role in working with public health to plan for these ongoing events.
Hot, humid locations like Southeast Texas provide the perfect environment for the spread of viruses travelers typically bring back to the United States after a trip to the tropics. Mosquitoes transmit dengue, and the only way to prevent infection is to avoid mosquito bites.
Download the slides or watch the hour-long discussion from April 12, 2017 (below).
Click on the "full screen" icon to see a larger version of the slides.
Got Infectious Diseases questions? Call the Knowledge Center.