BRIDGEPORT - The Connecticut Department of Public Health says pregnant women should avoid traveling to a suburban Miami neighborhood where several people contracted the Zika virus through mosquito bites, echoing a similar warning given Monday by federal officials.

Dr. Zane Saul, the chief of infectious diseases at Bridgeport Hospital, says that since Brazil and the Caribbean have been battling the virus for some time, it was only natural that it would spread to at least the southern U.S.

He advises against traveling to Zika-infected countries, in addition to wearing insect repellent and looking out for any unusual, flu-like symptoms.

On Tuesday, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention gave Connecticut a $400,000 grant to combat the virus. That money is on top of more than $500,000 the CDC gave the state on Monday.

Saul says the money would make it easier for people to be tested for the virus, help health officials monitor mosquito populations and track babies with Zika-related birth defects.