Over 750,000 Brits have travelled to Zika virus places so far this year. The World Health Organisation has stated the virus, which scientists are so sure about it. This virus can cause babies to be born with skull deformities, and it’s an international public health emergency.
There have been confirmed cases of mosquitoes infecting humans with the virus in almost all parts of Central and South America. Currently, it’s highly advisable for pregnant women to delay travelling to these countries until they give childbirth.
Picture Courtesy: www.mackay.health.qld.gov.au
But exclusive Mirror report shows that between January and April, an approximate total of 769,385 people flew from UK airports to 8 countries in Central and South America – Brazil, Argentina, Colombia, Cuba, the Dominican Republic, Costa Rica, Mexico, and Ecuador.
This was actually 8 % extra passengers to these countries than the same time in 2015. Only Brazil has seen a drop in passenger numbers.
The virus name is the Zika virus. The scary facts about a disease, it shrinks unborn babies’ heads. All 8 countries have had Zika infections from mosquitoes in at least the last 9 months. So far 37 British travellers have been confirmed as contaminated with the virus since 2015, from a report by Public Health England.
Humans usually become infected by mosquito bites but this Zika virus can also be sexually transmitted by men and also by blood exchanges.
Picture Courtesy: www.thestar.com.my
If any of these men who travelled from the UK to these lands became contaminated with Zika, they could probably transmit it on to sexual partners, Men suffering from symptoms to use condoms for 6 months after becoming ill, as advised by the health agency. It also suggested men with no symptoms to use condoms for 8 weeks after leaving a city with Zika.
According to PHE, There have not been any reports of women transmitting the virus to their sexual partners, but if a pregnant woman becomes contaminated, she can transmit the virus to her fetus, it can be riskful for unborn child being born with a deformed skull and possible brain illness.
According to Experts there is ‘consensus’ the virus causes microcephaly. There was a ‘scientific consensus’ that Zika induces microcephaly, said by WHO in April.
Babies born with the incurable form often have many other problems such as learning challenges and difficulties with balance.
The virus has led to many withdrawals from the Rio Olympics next month, most notably the world’s top 4 golfers – Jordan Speith, Rory McIlroy, Dustin Johnson, and Jason Day .