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In The News
   
 
 

 

In The News

 
January 28 - WHO: Zika virus ‘spreading explosively,’ level of alarm ‘extremely high’

Article: Signs Of The Last Times
 

The World Health Organization announced Thursday that it will convene an emergency meeting to try to find ways to stop the transmission of the Zika virus — which officials said is "spreading explosively" across the Americas. "The level of alarm is extremely high, as is the level of uncertainty. Questions abound. We need to get some answers quickly, " Margaret Chan, director general of the WHO, said in Geneva during a briefing for member countries.
 
The WHO said the pathogen, which was virtually unheard of in the region a year ago, is spreading so fast that it could infect as many as 3 million to 4 million people within 12 months. Chan said those numbers and the severity of the possible complications being reported -- from a brain abnormality called microcephaly in children to paralysis in adults -- make the situation dramatically different than what epidemiologists have seen with past outbreaks of the virus.
 
Health officials said 24 countries and territories are affected by mosquitoes that are transmitting Zika locally. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said the United States has 31 confirmed cases in 11 states and the District of Columbia. All are travel-related, said Lyle Petersen, director of CDC’s vector-borne disease division, and "this number is increasing rapidly." At least one involves a pregnant woman, New York City officials said Thursday. There also are 20 additional cases because of local transmission in U.S. territories — 19 in Puerto Rico and one in the U.S. Virgin Islands.

 

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