New York Governor Andrew Cuomo announced the New York Department of Health will offer advanced lab testing for individuals who traveled to countries affected by Zika virus.
The governor’s office says the testing will be done by the Wadsworth Center, one of three state laboratories in the nation with the ability to do this testing.
The testing will include screening and confirmatory tests for antibodies against the Zika virus and other related viruses.
“Protecting the health of this state and its residents is this administration’s highest priority,” said Governor Cuomo. “We’re working closely with the CDC and local health departments to address potential cases of Zika Virus, and by offering free testing we are helping to stay ahead of this disease and protect the public health. I encourage any New Yorkers who have recently traveled to impacted countries to stay informed and consult their health care professionals if they develop symptoms.”
The state also launched a new information hotline (1-888-364-4723) for New Yorkers to call and learn more about the virus. The hotline will be available weekdays from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.
The most common symptoms of the Zika virus are fever, rash, joint paint, or conjunctivitis. Health officials say symptoms typically begin two to seven days after being bitten by an infected mosquito.
According to the governor’s office, New Yorkers are urged to seek a healthcare provider if you are pregnant and develop a fever, rash, joint pain, or red eyes within two weeks of traveling to a country where Zika virus cases have been reported.
Officials recommend checking the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s travel website for up-to-date travel information.