CHA News Article

CDPH Updates Zika Virus Guidance

The California Department of Public Health has issued updated guidelines for managing possible Zika virus infections in pregnant or preconception patients. For all pregnant patients, providers should:

  • Screen for exposure to Zika virus and, if exposed in the last 12 weeks, ask about signs and symptoms such as fever, rash, conjunctivitis or joint pain since exposure.
  • Promptly test if a patient becomes symptomatic or her partner tests positive for Zika virus infection.
  • If a patient has a one-time risk of exposure, follow previously recommended steps.
  • If a patient has ongoing risk of exposure, conduct polymerase chain reaction testing at least once per trimester, unless a previous test has been positive.
  • Counsel pregnant women on the limitations of testing during each trimester.

If a symptomatic patient has no identifiable Zika exposure, providers should contact their local health department. Providers should remind patients who want to conceive in the near future, and who have an ongoing risk of Zika exposure, of recommendations to delay pregnancy until exposure can be reduced. Preconception patients should also consider immunoglobulin M testing to establish a baseline to inform future Zika test results, should the patient be exposed in an ensuing pregnancy.