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Worried about contracting Zika virus this summer? The District’s Department of Health plans to hold community meetings on Saturday where it will give out a few prophylactics against the scourge.
“FREE educational materials and Zika virus prevention kits (insect repellent, mosquito dunks and condoms) will be provided!” reads a flyer (no pun) for the gatherings. “There will also be on-site teams to share information on how to protect yourself and others from mosquito bites.”
City Desk has reached out to a DOH spokesperson for comment and will update this post if we hear back. The District has only confirmed three cases of the virus, all involving travel to Central or South America, between 2015 and 2016. The virus can lead to birth defects and has been found to be transmitted sexually.
The meetings will take place at the following locations from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.:
- Banneker Recreation Center, 2500 Georgia Ave. NW 20001 (Ward 1)
- Jellef Recreation Center, 3265 S St. NW 20007 (Ward 2)
- Chevy Chase Community Center, 5601 Connecticut Ave. NW 20015 (Ward 3)
- Emery Recreation Center, 5801 Georgia Ave. NW 20011 (Ward 4)
- Brentwood Recreation Center, 2311 14th St. NE 20018 (Ward 5)
- Kennedy Recreation Center, 1401 7th St. NW 20001 (Ward 6)
- Deanwood Recreation Center, 1350 49th St. NE 20019 (Ward 7)
- Bald Eagle Recreation Center, 100 Joliet St. SW 20032 (Ward 8)
Update, May 10: A DOH spokesperson says the department is preparing about 2,000 Zika-prevention kits for Saturday, and another set of community meetings is scheduled for July 16. “Residents will also have the opportunity to report high numbers of mosquitos or standing water in their neighborhood to the DOH Animal Disease Control Division by calling the dedicated hotline at (202) 442-5833 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org,” he writes in an email. “They will also be able to come directly to DOH to obtain mosquito protection kits.”
To reduce attracting mosquitos, the department recommends that residents “empty or throw away water-filled containers, cover or turn over empty items that can collect water,” and “clean and scrub bird baths and pet-watering dishes weekly.”