January 17, 2016 2:03 pm

Hawaii-born baby tests positive for Zika virus

The Zika virus is making its way through more than a dozen countries, such as Puerto Rico and Mexico. The virus is spread through the bite of a mosquito. Health officials say its inching closer to North America.

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HONOLULU – A baby born in an Oahu hospital has tested positive for the mosquito-borne Zika virus.

Health officials say there is no risk of transmission in Hawaii, where there has never been a case of a person acquiring Zika in the state. Six people have acquired the virus in other countries since 2014.

READ MORE: What pregnant women need to know about Zika virus and travel

Common symptoms can last up to a week and include fever, rash, joint pain and conjunctivitis.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said the mother was likely infected while in Brazil in May 2015.

Voice of America News reports that the baby has suffered brain damage. The virus has been linked to a recent surge in birth defects including microcephaly, a rare condition in which newborns have smaller than normal heads and their brains do not develop properly.

 

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© 2016 The Associated Press

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