WHO de­clares end of Zika emer­gency but still needs ac­tion

Fiji Sun - - World News -

Geneva: The World Health Or­gan­i­sa­tion (WHO) de­clared on Fri­day that the Zika virus and re­lated neu­ro­log­i­cal com­pli­ca­tions no longer con­sti­tute an in­ter­na­tional emer­gency but said it would con­tinue to work on the out­break through a “ro­bust pro­gramme”. The WHO’s Emer­gency Com­mit­tee, which de­clared an in­ter­na­tional pub­lic health emer­gency of in­ter­na­tional con­cern (PHEIC) in Fe­bru­ary, said the virus still rep­re­sented “a highly sig­nif­i­cant and a long-term prob­lem”. “The Zika virus and as­so­ci­ated con­se­quences re­main a sig­nif­i­cant en­dur­ing pub­lic health chal­lenge re­quir­ing in­tense ac­tion but no longer rep­re­sent a PHEIC,” the WHO panel com­posed of in­de­pen­dent ex­perts said in a state­ment af­ter meet­ing. Car­ried by mos­qui­toes, the Zika virus can cause the rare birth de­fect mi­cro­cephaly and other neu­ro­log­i­cal dis­or­ders in in­fants and adults. It has spread to more than 60 coun­tries and ter­ri­to­ries since the cur­rent out­break was iden­ti­fied last year in Brazil. Reuters

A pest con­trol worker fu­mi­gates a school cor­ri­dor on the eve of the an­nual na­tional Pri­mary School Eval­u­a­tion Test in Kuala Lumpur in Septem­ber.

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