Brazil declares end to Zika emergency after fall in cases

Ray Weaver
May 13, 2017

The national state of emergency regarding the Zika virus is over, Brazil's Ministry of Health announced.

According to Brazil's Ministry of Health, there have been 95% less reported Zika cases in the country during 2017, as opposed to 2016.

Zika is linked to a birth defect in babies born to pregnant women infected with the virus. The threat peaked just as Brazil prepared to host the 2016 Olympics.

In November a year ago the WHO had lifted its own global health emergency status for Zika, which can cause babies to be born with microcephaly, or abnormally small heads.

The WHO lifted its own global emergency in November, while saying the virus remained a threat.

Photos of babies with the defect spread panic around the Western Hemisphere and around the globe, as the virus was reported in dozens of countries. Travel advisories were issued against going to the affected places and reports of Zika fever started pouring in from several other countries.

"The Health Ministry and other bodies concerned will continue combating Zika", Adeilson Cavalcante, secretary in charge of health monitoring, said in a statement. A huge mosquito-eradication campaign began in response to the outbreak. Researchers writing in PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases found that the Zika virus-like particle (VLP) vaccine - which was developed by a biotechnology company in the business of novel vaccine technology - found that the vaccine was well-tolerated and safe in mice infected with Zika. 37 cases of Zika have been reported in Kentuckians.

But the World Health Organisation (WHO) has warned that Zika is "here to stay" despite the decline in cases, and that continued efforts are needed to fight the disease.

Back in 2015, the world was introduced to zika virus because it became an epidemic.

Other reports by Insurance News

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