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Zika Virus Transmission Found In A Second Area Of Miami

Florida officials say there's a new area in Miami where Zika has been transmitted locally. Health officials have identified two women and three men who appear to have contracted Zika within an area that includes Miami's Little Haiti neighborhood. Officials say three live in the area; two others work there or have visited.

Florida's Department of Health says there are now two areas in Miami where Zika is being transmitted. The other is Miami Beach, where authorities have aggressively worked to control mosquitoes since August. Those efforts included aerial spraying with a controversial insecticide, Naled. Last month, the zone of local Zika transmission in Miami Beach was tripled in size after new cases were identified.

Mosquito control efforts were successful in eliminating local Zika transmission in the first area in Miami where mosquitoes were found to be carrying the virus. That neighborhood, Wynwood, is just blocks away from the new one-square-mile area. South Florida is the only place so far in the continental U.S. with local Zika transmission. The CDC advises pregnant women to avoid non-essential travel to areas where Zika has been transmitted locally.

In announcing the new zone, Florida Gov. Rick Scott released a statement calling on the federal government to release additional funds to combat the disease. "It has been two weeks since federal funding to fight Zika was approved by Congress and signed by President Obama," Scott wrote. "However, Florida has not yet received a dime. We don't need bureaucratic timelines – we need funding now."

At least 174 people have contracted Zika in Florida, a number that includes 19 out-of-state visitors. Florida also has more than 700 cases of Zika contracted while traveling elsewhere. The only state with more travel-related Zika cases is New York, with more than 850. Florida's Department of Health says 106 Zika infections in the state involve pregnant women.

Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

As NPR's Miami correspondent, Greg Allen reports on the diverse issues and developments tied to the Southeast. He covers everything from breaking news to economic and political stories to arts and environmental stories. He moved into this role in 2006, after four years as NPR's Midwest correspondent.
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