Environmental Health & Safety


The Zika virus is a mosquito-borne, emergent virus that had been spreading rapidly in Brazil, Colombia, Mexico, Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, American Samoa and Samoa. UNCW urges all persons who are traveling to Central America, South America, the Caribbean or other affected areas to become familiar with the symptoms of Zika as well as how to protect yourself from mosquitoes.

If you are traveling outside of the continental United States, see Zika Travel Information to learn about your destination.

In 2018 and 2019, no local mosquito-borne Zika virus transmission has been reported in the continental United States.


General Information

  • The CDC recommends that pregnant women consider postponing travel to the affected areas.

What are the symptoms of Zika?

The symptoms of the Zika virus include fever, muscle pain, eye pain, weakness and rash; however, there can be significantly greater effects on fetuses. Women who are pregnant or those who could become pregnant are urged to exercise extreme care. Symptoms typically begin 2 to 7 days after being bitten by an infected mosquito.

How is Zika transmitted?

Zika is primarily transmitted through the bite of infected Aedes mosquitoes, the same mosquitoes that spread Chikungunya and Dengue. These mosquitoes bite mainly during the daytime. Mosquitoes become infected when they bite a person already infected with the virus. Infected mosquitoes can then spread the virus to other people through bites. The Zika virus can also be transmitted during unprotected sexual activity as well as from a pregnant mother to her baby during pregnancy or around the time of birth. Scientists and health care professionals do not know how often Zika is transmitted from mother to baby during pregnancy or around the time of birth.


Know Before You Go

Everyone wants to have a great travel experience, so learn how to prevent bug bites that can ruin your trip, or keep you sick well after you return home.

CDC Travel Notices

CDC Infographic: Prevent Bug Bites 

More Important Links:

Campus Contacts

If you have any concerns regarding the Zika Virus: