Man tests positive for Zika virus in Alaska after visit abroad

ANCHORAGE — Alaska health officials say a Midwest man working in Alaska has tested positive for the Zika virus following a recent visit to Central America.

Officials say the man has returned to his home in the Midwest. Officials say he was never hospitalized in Alaska.

Dawnell Smith, a spokeswoman with the Alaska Department of Health, says a blood specimen was collected from the man at a southeast Alaska clinic July 18 while he was sick.

Officials say the man contracted in Central America earlier this month.

Smith says she doesn’t know where the man’s hometown is. She says his is the first positive Zika test at an Alaska facility.
The virus causes only a mild illness in most people, but infection during pregnancy can lead to severe brain-related birth defects.