BY: CLAIRE KIM
As of 2019, the most popular health concerns that have been discussed ranged from issues of abortion to drug abuse to even suicide. Looking for ways to stop these trends from inflating, the public has organized several relief organizations and billboards to accommodate such plans. Though numbers may still be rising, the good news is that rates are slowing down and awareness of how serious the issue is has grown immensely. But something more deadly is still on the loose. A virus, to be more exact.
The Zika Virus of 2016.
The Zika Virus, as most people may know, started gaining attention in the states when news of the virus was seen killing hundreds of Americans all of a sudden. Originating from Brazil, south of the US, the virus became a national scare for everyone when masses of people started falling victim to the sickness so quickly and effortlessly one by one. With rising concerns about the disease’s susceptibility, restrictions on foreign travel and international commerce halted for a moment. In an attempt to mitigate the chances of the disease spreading further in the US such precautions were necessary and well understood by the people in fear of being the next Zika victim. As the virus grew less prominent and its effect less toxic, Americans assumed that the crisis was over and everything would be fine from now on. Sadly, three years have passed and the danger has sparked again.
According to the New York Times, “The virus, which is mostly spread by mosquitoes but also through sex with an infected person, is still circulating in Brazil and other countries that were at the center of the epidemic, and two years ago the same strain from the Americas arrived in continental Africa for the first time”. But more concerning than this is the prevalence of the Aedes mosquito in the US which spreads the disease more efficiently. Though it may seem like the virus is too far from the US to spread, this mosquito, though unable to fly far distances, has the mobile capacity to do so at certain lengths. So really the virus is not unreachable.
In light of this saddening news, we need to stay sanitized and safe from areas that may potentially be infected with disease.
The outbreak is not over. It will never be. Thus, it’s our responsibility to protect ourselves and be cautious with our actions if we don’t want to be impacted harshly by the Zika virus if it happens to slide into our bodies casually.