Screening for Zika will begin Friday at local blood banks - KTEN.com - No One Gets You Closer

Screening for Zika will begin Friday at local blood banks

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SHERMAN, TX-- The Federal Drug Administration told local blood banks to start screening for Zika.

The Texoma Regional Blood Center in Sherman said testing will start Friday.

"It is scary. It can be transmitted through blood, it can be transmitted through mosquitoes, there's tons of ways,"  Francis Campbell Director of Donor Resources said.

The FDA is working with blood centers to help stop the spread of Zika by screening all donations.

"We have to implement it into our computer systems to make sure it will come across correctly whenever we're reporting the results in our system," Campbell said.

The blood bank said there will be additional costs for the testing, but it's not a lot.

Donors we spoke to Thursday are happy to hear about the new change and hope it limits the number of infants born with the virus.

"There's so many people traveling, I guess, to the border countries that do have the Zika for people. You know, you don't want babies to get it," blood donor Danielle Holder said.

The CDC said Zika can be transmitted by mosquitoes from mother to child if the mom has the virus, as well as through sex and blood transfusions. If a child is born with the virus it can cause brain defects.

"I know whenever I was pregnant I was terrified of the cause and effect all over the news,” donor Charltin Mast said.

But it's still important local blood banks receive donations.

Giving blood only takes about 20 minutes and the blood center said they're in dire need of donations.

All blood types are needed.

"I am also O-, so I can be given to anyone," donor  Deni Townsend said.