It’s flu season, but don’t forget about Zika, says CDC official

From the Orlando Sentinel
January 18, 2018

An op-ed by Dr. Gary Brunette, Chief of the Center for Disease Control and Prevention’s Travelers’ Health Branch

The New Year is often a time when we focus on our health. We make resolutions to increase our physical activity and watch what we eat. How about being more aware of travel-related illnesses like Zika and taking steps to prevent them? That should be on your list, too. Whether you just returned from celebrating Three Kings with family and friends in Latin America or the Caribbean, or are planning a trip for Spring Break, now is the time to prevent Zika.

This an especially important time of year to remind pregnant women to protect their health and not travel to areas with a risk of Zika. Becoming infected with Zika during pregnancy can cause microcephaly and other severe birth defects.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) wants you to know that Zika virus is still a major public health concern in many parts of the world. CDC recommends that U.S. travelers who are planning to visit Latin America or the Caribbean take action now to prevent contracting or spreading Zika, especially travelers who are planning to start a family in the near future. And those who recently returned from the region, if you are not feeling well, you should see a doctor and mention that you have recently traveled.

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