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HARRIS COUNTY (CBSDFW.COM) – Texas has had its first Zika-related death. The Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) has confirmed that the death of an infant in Harris County is linked to the Zika virus.
Officials say the newborn female, who passed away shortly after birth, had microcephaly — a condition that causes babies to be born with unusually small heads and has been linked to pregnant women infected with Zika.
The infants mother was pregnant when she visited Latin America and is believed to have become infected there. Officials say the “baby acquired the infection in the womb.”
It was just last month that another Harris County infant was listed as the first in the state to have microcephaly.
So far, Texas has had 97 cases of people infected with Zika, and all of the cases have involved individuals who had travel abroad to Zika-infested areas. The mosquito linked to Zika, the aedes aegypti, can be found in the southern U.S. from Florida to California, but to date there have been no reported cases of Zika being transmitted by mosquitoes in Texas.
Given the number of Zika cases in Texas and this first-ever virus related, microcephaly infant death, DSHS says health workers across the state are now on alert for the possibility of local Zika transmission.
Click here to find out ore about Zika virus transmission and prevention from DSHS.
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