As Public Concern Over Zika Eases In U.S., Efforts To Find Tests, Treatments For Dangerous Virus Stall
The inability to provide quick, inexpensive tests to diagnose the virus is hindering efforts in Angola to track the disease that can cause severe disabilities in babies, health experts say. In other news on Zika, mothers in Brazil give around-the-clock care for their disabled children.
Why It’s So Hard To Diagnose Zika
When a Zika epidemic was at its height in the Americas two years ago, diagnostics makers began working feverishly to create diagnostic tests for a virus that few in the U.S. had heard of. Those efforts have now largely stalled, as public concern has waned, health experts say, and the development of inexpensive tests that can quickly detect Zika infections and distinguish them from similar mosquito-borne diseases remains elusive. (10/17)
Mothers Of Babies Afflicted By Zika Fight Poverty, Despair
Nearly three years after a Zika outbreak in Brazil caused thousands of cases of microcephaly and other devastating birth defects in newborns, Reuters returned to check on the mothers and their children. Zika, the first mosquito-borne virus known to damage developing fetuses, has since disappeared from headlines, but world health officials fear its spread to new populations. In Angola, dozens of babies born with microcephaly since 2017 appear linked to the same strain of Zika that hit Latin America. (10/17)