Mosquito repellent for prevention of Zika virus to become continuous benefit for Texas Medicaid, CHIP

AUSTIN—Beginning Monday, Feb. 12, 2018, mosquito repellent for the prevention of Zika virus will become a continuous, year-round benefit for Texas Medicaid and CHIP. The Texas Health and Human Services Commission is offering the repellent to ensure additional Texans are protected from the virus that can be devastating to unborn babies.

Benefit details

  • Covered programs – Medicaid, CHIP and CHIP-Perinatal.
  • Eligible members:
    • pregnant women of any age;
    • females, ages 10 through 55; and
    • males, age 14 and older.
  • The pharmacy benefit for approved mosquito repellents is limited to one can/bottle per prescription fill, with up to two fills allowable per calendar month.
  • A prescription is required for claim approval of mosquito repellent when the standing order is not used by a pharmacy.

Zika virus is transmitted to people primarily through the bite of an infected mosquito, but it can also spread by sexual contact. While symptoms are often minor, Zika can cause severe birth defects in the babies of some women infected with the virus during pregnancy.

State health officials urge people to protect themselves at home and while traveling to areas where Zika is spreading. Precautions include consistently using mosquito repellent when outside, wearing long sleeves and pants, and using air conditioning or making sure window screens will keep mosquitoes out of the home. Texas is also calling on people to dump out containers that could hold standing water in and around their homes and businesses to deny mosquitoes a place to lay their eggs, decrease the overall number of mosquitoes, and help protect family members and neighbors from Zika.

For more information about the Zika virus, visit TexasZika.org.