November 18, 2016
The U.S. Embassy in Nassau provides this update of its previous message informing U.S. citizens that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has issued a travel notice for The Bahamas regarding the Zika virus. The CDC has concluded that the Zika virus is a cause of microcephaly and other severe fetal brain defects in some fetuses and babies born to infected mothers. This conclusion was based on increasing evidence from a number of recently published studies and a careful evaluation using established scientific criteria. Zika may also be linked to Guillain-Barré syndrome, which can affect individuals of any age or sex. Zika virus is typically a mosquito-borne illness, but there have been confirmed cases of transmission through sexual contact and blood transfusion. CDC reports that travel to elevations higher than 2,000 m (6,500 ft) above sea level is considered to have minimal likelihood for mosquito-borne Zika virus transmission, even within countries reporting active transmission. CDC recommends that women who are pregnant should not travel to areas that are at elevations less than 2,000 m above sea level in countries with ongoing Zika virus transmission. For general information about Zika, please visit the CDC website.
For further information:
- See the State Department’s travel website for the Worldwide Caution, Travel Warnings, Travel Alerts, and Bahamas Specific Information.
- Enroll in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) to receive security messages and make it easier to locate you in an emergency.
- Contact the U.S. Embassy in The Bahamas, located at 42 Queen Street (across from the British Colonial Hilton Hotel), Nassau; telephone: 242-322-1181; after hours emergency telephone: 242-357-7004; ACS unit fax: 242-356-7174; e-mail: ACSNASSAU@state.gov ; web page: https://bs.usembassy.gov.
- The Turks & Caicos Consular Agency is located at 2 Venture Ct., Grace Bay Suite 102E, Providenciales, Turks and Caicos. The Consular Agent is LeShelle Tull-Thomas (649-232-5713, TullThomasLS@state.gov).
- Call 1-888-407-4747 toll-free in the United States and Canada or 1-202-501-4444 from other countries from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Eastern Standard Time, Monday through Friday (except U.S. federal holidays).
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