Surveillance snapshot: Zika virus infection among Military Health System beneficiaries following introduction of the virus into the Western Hemisphere, 20 May 2016
Writer, James V
Poss, Daniela E
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The introduction and rapid spread of Zika virus (ZIKV) across the Western Hemisphere have posed a risk of infection to Military Health System (MHS) beneficiaries. The associated consequences of infection and the dynamics of transmission may place a unique burden on military personnel, their dependents, and the MHS. This article summarizes the impact of ZIKV transmission on MHS beneficiaries between 1 January and 30 November 2016. Cases were identified from a variety of sources, including direct reporting from the services, extraction of laboratory data, and data from the Defense Medical Surveillance System (DMSS) Reportable Medical Events database. There have been 156 confirmed cases of Zika in MHS beneficiaries, including five Zika cases in pregnant beneficiaries and 110 cases in service members. A majority of cases reported exposure in Puerto Rico (n=91, 58.3%). Although most ZIKV infections are asymptomatic or have a relatively mild illness, the gravity of pregnancy and neurologic issues linked to infection remains a significant impetus for the continued surveillance of ZIKV in the MHS population.