Mosquito-borne malaria case confirmed in Bradenton area, health dept. says

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The Florida Department of Health in Sarasota and Manatee County is taking action following one confirmed malaria case, the Manatee County health department said Saturday in a press release.

According to the release, the person who contracted malaria spent a lot of time outside.

The person was sent to the hospital for treatment, and has now recovered.

The type of malaria the person had was diagnosed as P. vivax, which is less fatal than other species.

Malaria is not passed from person to person but from mosquitoes to humans. Once contacted, people experience symptoms of fever, chills, sweats, nausea or vomiting, and headaches, the release said.

To reduce the risk of disease transmission, the health departments are collaborating with local partners and county mosquito control to conduct aerial and ground mosquito spraying.

To protect yourself from any mosquito-borne illness, the health department suggests taking the following steps:

  • Use mosquito repellent that contains DEET (10-30 percent), picaridin, oil of lemon

  • eucalyptus, para-menthane-diol, 2-undecanone or IR3535.

  • Wear long sleeves and pants.

  • Check and repair screens on doors and windows to prevent mosquitoes from entering your home.

In addition, according to the release, to reduce the population of mosquitoes around their homes, residents should drain and cover areas around their homes. Mosquitoes reproduce in freshwater from rainstorms, sprinklers, and other sources.

Also, residents should drain pools of freshwater surrounding their homes and yards. Empty pet bowls, garbage cans, garbage can lids, bottles, tires, and anything where freshwater has accumulated, the release said.