Why All the Concern?
Although skeptics feel there is a ‘burn out’ point when the virus may diminish, critics site overreaction. The public, especially in non-third world locations, is in a completely reactive state. They’re not used to feeling like they live in virus-ridden environments such as Africa or areas of Asia including India. Zika has transcended all boundaries and economic classes. Now we’re talking about the economy of countries, not in rural or remote areas, but in cities where international sporting events are played - did Zika hamper travel to Brazil for the recent international Olympics? Most definitely, the data indicates - YES.
In the long run, what are the far-reaching effects from extreme toxins released in bulk into the environment during the initial "panic phase" of attempting to manage the highly-publicized Zika virus infestation? Zika will never disappear. It will fade into the background and fall off frontpage headlines internationally, but the damage will have been done; generations of poor health, toxicity, and unhealthy, affected children, the fodder for bankrupt economies.
Clearly, have we not learned from our mistakes in this regard. The EPA and other private organizations flip-flop on their opinion of the dangers of pesticides such as DEET depending on the urgency of a ‘solution’ to prevent public panic or, God forbid, a natural solution is found that trumps their multi-billion dollar pesticide revenues.
Facts about the Zika and Other Dangerous Viruses:
By now, everyone is familiar with the Zika virus crisis occurring in more than 38 + countries and territories, especially in the Americas. Now cases have been reported in several countries outside the ‘target zone’ including China and the northern United States.
It is carried by only two species of female mosquitoes—Aedes aegypti and Aedes albopictus. One model of Zika spread includes places that include both mosquito vectors and airports. For example, researchers tracking the Zika virus mapped final destinations of about 9.9 million travelers who departed Brazil between September 2014 and August 2015. Nearly 3 million came into the U.S. The concern is the expansion by global travelers.
Healthcare workers in Brazil were stunned to learn that throughout all of 2015 into 2016, there have been more than 4,000 diagnosed new Zika related microcephaly cases — more than 20 times higher than average numbers in prior years.
The Zika virus causes Guillain-Barré syndrome, an incurable, debilitating neurological condition. The body's own immune system attacks the peripheral nervous system including the nerves that connect the brain to muscles and limbs.
The Zika virus causes microcephaly in newborns causing abnormal brain development and physical deformity, often leading to death, but confining survivors a lifetime of assisted care, usually provided by government agencies.
Zika virus and other virus-carrying mosquitoes are resistant to current pesticides exposure and are evolving defenses, including becoming ‘day-feeders’, creating more exposure to humans, rendering mosquito netting less effective (unlike the Malaria mosquito, who is strictly a night feeder).
Zika is related to dengue hemorrhagic fever which is transmitted by the Aedes aegypti mosquito, known since ancient times as a carrier which proliferates in urban or populated environments.
The Zika virus is also transmitted sexually.
Zika isn’t our only concern, it’s just the most recent insect-related crisis. Consider the history of mosquito-transmitted diseases and viruses affecting us globally. Some are ancient, some are ‘new’ strains, but all carry risk, infection, disease and potential death.