DOCTOR tracked ZIKA last year and proposed the designation of REGIONAL EMERGING VIRUSES REFERRAL CENTERS.
It seems that when it was an isolated mainland event in south Florida, public concern disappeared and public health authorities breathed a sigh of relief.
Even though we now know that more ZIKA outbreaks are likely and that the consequences for some babies will be catastrophic, authorities apparently are leaving every hospital to plan on its own.
Here’s one reason centralized planning is a necessity and Referral Centers need to be designated.
The New York Times story, by Catherine Saint Louis, noted:(A)
“Women who do not have any symptoms of Zika virus still may give birth to a baby with Zika-related birth defects, research has shown. The only way to catch those infections is to screen women because they may have been exposed to Zika-infected mosquitoes or may have had sexual contact with an infected partner.
In this new report, “The presence or absence of symptoms was not predictive of whether a baby would be damaged,” … “There were women who had asymptomatic Zika whose babies were damaged.”
Currently, only about 60 percent of babies born alive in United States territories had results of Zika laboratory testing reported to pregnancy and infant registries. It’s important that all babies who may have been affected are monitored, as early intervention can help.
For instance, some babies who appear normal at birth later develop an unusually shrunken head. Only with long-term tracking can health officials get an accurate estimate of the scope of the problem.”
Previous ZIKA related DOCTOR posts:
ZIKA UPDATE #1. EBOLA is back in Africa. Is ZIKA next? Are we prepared? (B)
All pregnant women with Zika diagnosed at community hospitals must be referred to academic medical centers for prenatal care! (C)
Former hospital prez says: Designate local Zika centers now. “Medical experts do not know if, or where, or how much, or on what trajectory the Zika virus may spread across the United States.” (D)