The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and other healthcare agencies across the globe are offering travel recommendations to help those going to the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil protect themselves from the Zika virus.
These same recommendations should be followed in other parts of the affected world (see inset map and updates here) where Zika has been detected.
We have an unprecedented health threat, and we don’t have the robust resources that would enable us to respond most effectively. Without additional resources, this is like fighting a fight with one hand tied behind our backs.
– Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Director Tom Frieden.
Recommendations for travelers, according to the CDC:
• Zika is spread mostly by the bite of an infected mosquito. All travelers to the Olympics should take precautions to protect themselves against mosquito bites. Use insect repellent on exposed skin that contain active ingredients such DEET, picaridin, oil of lemon eucalyptus, IR3535, or para-methane-diol; wear long sleeves and long pants when possible; and stay in air conditioned or screened-in rooms.
• Zika can be passed from a pregnant woman to her fetus. Infection during pregnancy can cause certain birth defects. Pregnant women should not go to the Olympics. For those who must go, talk with a health care provider before going, strictly follow steps to prevent mosquito bites, and use a condom or do not have sex. Women who could become pregnant or are trying to become pregnant should talk with a health care provider about the risk of Zika virus infection, strictly follow steps to prevent mosquito bites, and use a condom or do not have sex.
• Zika can be passed through sex from a person who has Zika to his or her partners. Zika can be passed through sex, even if the infected person does not have symptoms at the time. All travelers should either use a condom or do not have sex.
Find more from the CDC here. There is no vaccine or medicine for Zika.
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