Via The Palm Beach Post: US’s first locally-transmitted chikungunya cases in PB County, Miami. Click through for a video. Excerpt:
A 50-year-old man in Palm Beach County and a 41-year-old woman in Miami-Dade County are the first people in the continental U.S. to come down with a locally transmitted case of the mosquito-borne illness chikungunya, Florida health officials said Thursday.
In the last year, state health officials have kept careful tabs on the incurable virus that has swept the Caribbean. As of last week, they counted 81 cases in Florida, but all of them were acquired during travel abroad.
“At this time there is no broad risk to the health of the public,” Dr. Celeste Philip, deputy secretary for health, said in a telephone press conference from Tallahassee.
While not typically fatal, chikungunya can trigger severe fevers and joint pain and some symptoms can linger for weeks or even years.
Infants, people older than 65 and those with compromised immune symptoms are at the most risk from the disease.
The Palm Beach County man began showing symptoms July 1 and sought treatment at a local hospital July 3, health officials said. He was briefly hospitalized, but is now home. The Miami-Dade patient is a woman, 41, who noted symptoms June 10 and saw a private physician June 13.
“We are pleased to report that each patient is doing well,” Philip said.