by Loren G. Edelstein | December 09, 2016

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has updated Zika guidance for people who travel to or live in the one-square-mile Little River district in Miami, previously designated an active area of virus transmission (aka a red area). The district is now designated as a Zika cautionary area (or yellow area). 

There have been no new cases of local Zika virus transmission identified in Little River for more than 45 days. This suggests that the risk of infection is no longer greater than in the rest of surrounding Miami-Dade County, designated yellow, except for South Miami Beach, whose red status will remain until 45 days pass without new cases diagnosed there.

Women and men living in or who traveled to Little River should be aware this location was considered a red area from Oct. 13 to Dec. 2, 2016.

Pregnant women in Miami-Dade County are eligible for free Zika virus testing through the county health department. All pregnant women in the United States should be evaluated for possible Zika virus exposure during each prenatal care visit. To determine whether Zika virus testing is needed, each evaluation should include an assessment of signs and symptoms of Zika virus disease (fever, rash, joint pain, and red eyes), their travel history, and their sexual partner's potential exposure to Zika virus and history of any illness consistent with Zika virus disease.

"At this time, we are removing the red zone from the Little River area of Miami," said CDC director Tom Frieden, M.D., M.P.H. "We still advise pregnant women not to travel to the red zone in South Miami Beach. Furthermore, people living in or visiting Miami-Dade County, including the Little River area, particularly pregnant women, are still encouraged to continue to take steps to prevent mosquito bites and to follow guidelines for preventing sexual transmission. We must remain vigilant."

As of statistics updated on Dec. 7, the number of reported zika cases in the U.S. was 4,575; of those, 185 were locally acquired, mosquito-borne cases. In U.S. territories, locally acquired cases rose to 33,838, with all but 126 stemming from local mosquitoes.