Nashville At Moderate Risk For Zika Virus

Posted at 3:33 PM, Apr 28, 2016
and last updated 2016-04-28 22:55:53-04

Researchers focused on 50 cities in the United States and found Nashville is at a moderate risk for the Zika virus.

"They're traveling to areas where mosquitos are carrying Zika and exposing people and then returning," said Brian Todd with the Metro Public Health Department. Because of that, so far this year Todd said we've had a Zika case in both east and west Tennessee.

"Zika is very scary, and we know more and more it seems like everyday, and we learn that through the CDC," he said.

We know for pregnant women it can be extremely dangerous leading to birth defects. We also know there have been no reported Zika cases in Nashville though the city again is at moderate risk and here's why.

"It's a certain type of mosquito that carries the virus," said Todd. "We don't have that specific type here, however we do have a similar species of mosquitos."

So they have been wanting the public to be aware of the dangers these pesky insects pose.

"Not only because there's a potential of Zika threat, even though we don't have it here, but we do know the West Nile threat is here," said Todd.

The health department has also been doing its part in the field.

"One of the things we do throughout mosquito season is we monitor standing water areas," said Todd. "If we find mosquito larvae, we apply a granular that kills the larvae before they become biting mosquitos."

They're also going into area neighborhoods to educate neighbors.

"We want people to know and take the steps to one, reduce mosquito breeding areas by dumping out standing water, and two, when you are outdoors protect yourself with repellant," said Todd.

If you think your neighborhood needs to be inspected or if you have concerns about mosquitos you can call the health department or visit their web page by clicking here.