Standard precautions can help prevent spread of Zika virus
RAYMOND, Miss. -- Zika virus is now among the list of mosquito-borne viruses Mississippians should guard against, but standard defenses can help prevent spread of the disease.
A suspected link between the infection and certain birth defects, including microcephaly, prompted the World Health Organization to declare a public health emergency of international concern on Feb. 1. Babies with microcephaly are born with smaller-than-usual heads due to interrupted brain development.
“No Zika virus cases have been reported in Mississippi,” said Wendy Varnado, an entomologist with the Mississippi State Department of Health. “But we are on the lookout. There is potential for the virus to spread because we do have confirmed cases of the virus in the United States and the types of mosquitoes that can carry the disease. People should take the standard precautionary steps to prevent mosquito bites.”
Jerome Goddard, an Extension professor of medical and veterinary entomology with Mississippi State University, said two types of mosquitoes can carry the Zika virus: Aedes aegypti and Aedes albopictus.
State’s presidential primaries March 8
Mississippians return to the polls March 8 for primary elections for federal offices and to elect members to county election commissions and levee boards. Races for the Mississippi Supreme Court and the Court of Appeals will also be on the ballot.
Candidates qualifying for the Democratic primary are: for President, Hillary Clinton, Roque ‘Rocky’ De La Fuente, Martin O’Malley, and Bernie Sanders; and for U.S. House, 2nd District, Bennie G. Thompson.
Go Red, Tunica
FSB staff surprises co-worker with big gift
Mondays are days that few look forward to, but for one First Security Bank employee, Monday, Feb. 8 was a good day.
Just after 9 a.m., the staff of First Security Bank in Tunica gathered outside their branch to surprise their friend and co-worker Rosetta Simmons with a handicapped accessible van. Simmons said the van will be used to provide transportation for her six year granddaughter, Zakyia Island, who has quadriplegic cerebral palsy.
First Security Vice President Kerry Temple said the effort was three months in the making and involved Simmons’ classmate, Chris Hudson.
Hudson, who now resides in Crenshaw, said he first acquired the van for his 15 year old son, who also has cerebral palsy. As his son grew, the physical strain of getting him in and out of a vehicle became increasingly difficult on him and his wife. He found a van and bought a manual ramp that attaches to the side of a vehicle or can be taken out to provide wheelchair accessibility for a building if necessary.
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