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Florida county reports 7th case of locally acquired malaria amid illness advisory

Florida health officials announced a new locally acquired case of malaria in the southern Sarasota County. 

The case was reported during the week of July 9-15, according to the Florida Department of Health. 

That comes in addition to five cases there last month and one reported in May. 

Of the cases of malaria with onset this year, 26 have been reported in individuals with a travel history to a malaria-endemic area. 

Officials there have been using aircraft, trucks and ground crews to apply insecticide to the area where the malaria cases were reported.

Mosquito control workers are trapping the insects and sending them to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Health officials at Sarasota County Mosquito Management Services study specimens of anopheles mosquitoes

Health officials at Sarasota County Mosquito Management Services study specimens in Sarasota, Florida, on June 30, 2023. (Chandan Khanna/AFP via Getty Images)

The department notes that the largest outbreak in recent Florida history occurred in Palm Beach County in 2003, when there were eight cases.

Since 1992, there have been 11 outbreaks involving malaria from mosquitoes in the U.S. 

Approximately 2,000 U.S. cases of malaria are diagnosed each year, with travelers coming from countries where malaria commonly spreads to the vast majority of those infected.

A Miami-Dade Mosquito Control inspector sprays a pesticide to kill mosquitos

Margine Rodriguez, a Miami-Dade mosquito control inspector, sprays a pesticide to kill adult mosquitos on June 29, 2023, in Miami, Florida. (Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

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