Miscellaneous Thursday

Global Health:

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Every four years, people unite from all over the world to watch the battle for the gold at the Summer Olympics. This August, Rio, Brazil will have the honor of being the center of all the action. The excitement this year is tempered by growing concerns about the Zika virus.  Spectators, locals, athletes and organizers alike are worried about the spread of this illness. Mosquitos, particularly  the Aedes agypti are known to transmit this disease. While adults who contract the Zika virus usually only experience symptoms so mild they may not even realize they have it, pregnant women should be wary, for it can cause terrible birth defects such as microcephaly, a condition which causes an infant to have an excessively small head.

    Experts have also voiced social concerns about the spread of the Zika virus, for while the upper class spectators will be capable of taking proper safety measures, the impoverished local population will not. The poor will therefore be subjected to the worst effects of the Zika virus.  Despite these growing concerns, the World Health Organization announced that having the Olympics in Brazil should not be a problem provided everyone takes the necessary precautions. Pregnant women should not attend. To find out more about the issue of the Zika virus and the Olympics, check out this article by the New York Times: http://www.nytimes.com/2016/06/15/health/brazil-olympic-games-zika.html?_r=0To find out more about precautionary measures and prevention of Zika, visit the official website of the CDC: https://www.cdc.gov/zika/prevention/index.html

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