Zika Virus Could Hit Europe, Warns WHO


After declaring worldwide emergency , World Health Organisation has warned Europe over the Zika outbreak, which could also hit every European country.  It is predicted that it could hit beyond South America through people travelling to other countries.

WHO’s Chief said that the virus could take its hold in spring and summer season as temperatures warm up. According to health experts, European countries have less risk of Aedes mosquito now, but it would likely to take toll in hotter seasons.

“Every European country in which Aedes mosquitoes are present can be at risk for the spread of Zika virus disease,” said WHO Europe chief Zsuzsanna Jakab.

“A number of travellers infected with Zika have entered Europe, but the disease has not been transmitted further, as the mosquito is still inactive.With the onset of spring and summer, the risk that Zika virus will spread increases.” added Jakab.

Portugese island of Mediera has “Aedes aegypti” mosquito, which is responsible for most of the cases in South America, according to a report by Sky News. Around 2000 ‘dengue fever” cases were reported in 2012.

“Aedes albopictus” is another type of mosquito that exists in Italy and southern France and eastern Spain.

Authorities have recommended to keep the surroundings clean, such as spritzing insecticides and cleaning stagnant water.

Health experts have advised women to avoid traveling to affected countries and those who are living in these countries should avoid pregnancy. Those who have been to any foreign country, will have to face a 28-day ban before donating blood.

At a summit, Brazil’s top health official Marcelo Castro, urged for South and Latin American cooperation to carry out necessary steps in controlling this epidemic, according to a report by DW.  Zika virus has its stronghold in Brazil, with 4000 cases.

The virus has so far made its appearance in around 30 countries.  A sexually transmitted case of Zika was reported in Texas this week.

Governor of Florida has also declared the health emergency in four counties – Miami-Dade, Lee, Hillsborough and Santa Rosa, after receiving reports of nine mosquito-borne health cases.

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