First Zika Case Confirmed in Coachella Valley




The woman is the second person in Riverside County to test positive for the virus.

PALM SPRINGS — A Coachella Valley woman has tested positive for the Zika virus, which health officials said she contracted while traveling. The woman, who officials have declined to identify, is not pregnant and was expected to fully recover.

Officials say she is the second Riverside County resident to test positive for the virus and the first from the Coachella Valley. Both instances involved travel.

Local vector control officials will be conducting robust mosquito control measures in Palm Springs and Cathedral City, in the areas bordered by Tachevah Drive, Date Palm Drive, 30th Avenue and Landau Boulevard.

These efforts will include setting mosquito traps, sending trapped mosquitoes for arboviral testing, searching for standing water sources and other potential breeding sites, and conducting door-to-door inspections.

Officials say the mosquito that carries Zika has been found in portions of the county, including the Coachella Valley.

Around 80 percent of infected patients never have symptoms, while illness may develop in 20 percent of infected people within three to seven days of being bitten, according to health officials. Common symptoms include fever, rash, joint pain, conjunctivitis, muscle pain and headache. Symptoms are usually mild, officials say, and can last for several days to a week.

Serious, but rare, complications include abnormal brain development in a baby whose pregnant mother is infected.

Last week, the California Department of Public Health reported two cases of Zika-related birth defects in California.

State health officials say that while mosquitoes capable of carrying Zika have been found in 12 California counties, “there is no evidence these mosquitoes are transmitting Zika in the state at this time.”