For Immediate Release

May 24, 2016;  9:50 AM

DPHSS Release No. 2016-042

The Department of Public Health and Social Services would like to inform the public of an extension of time for all interested pregnant women to register for a free of charge pesticide application to their homes, in an effort to protect them and their unborn children from the Zika Virus through prevention and control activities of immature and adult mosquitoes. 

The Department, through the assistance of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), will apply insecticides for the elimination of adult and l arval mosquitoes from living and multiplying around the homes of pregnant women.    If you are a pregnant woman, and would like to take advantage of this free service, you may contact Maria Dixon at 735-7104 or maria.dixon@dphss.guamdev.com.  The deadline to register has been extended to 5:00 p.m. on Friday, May 27, 2016.  The list of participants will then be forwarded to CDC for scheduling this summer.

The public is assured that these pesticides (deltamethrin and Bacillus thuringiensis, subsp. israelensis) are registered with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA).  Based on the insecticide labels, the threat to human health is minimal and the pesticide has low toxicity.  However, the Office of the Pesticide Programs of the USEPA has stated: “Where possible, persons who are potentially more sensitive, such as pregnant women and infants (less than two years old), should avoid any unnecessary pesticide exposure.”

In addition, the Department encourages all pregnant women and the general public to protect themselves from mosquito bites and offers the following recommendations:

  • Use EPA-registered mosquito repellant and apply according to the label instructions.  This includes children and pregnant women.

  • Wear long-sleeved shirts, long pants, socks, and shoes.

  • Mosquitoes may bite through thin clothing, so spraying clothes with a repellent containing permethrin or DEET will give extra protection.  These repellants are the most effective and most studied.

  • Avoid being outside during times of high mosquito activity, including during the day and around dawn or dusk.

  • Stay and sleep in places with air conditioning or with window and door screens to keep mosquitoes outside.  Sleep under a mosquito-proof net if air conditioned or screened rooms are not available or if sleeping outdoors.

  • Zika virus can be spread during sex by a man infected with Zika to his partners.  If you have a male partner who lives in or has traveled to an area with Zika, either use condoms the right way, every time you have sex, or do not have sex.  Not having sex is the best way to prevent getting Zika from sex.

    For further information, please contact the Mosquito Control and Surveillance Program of DEH at 735-7221.                                                                                                           

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