WHO wants to prevent inappropriate trade or travel limits due to Zika

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Bruce Aylward, the assistant director of the The World Health Organization, says the UN agency has called for an emergency meeting partly to ensure that national authorities do not impose inappropriate travel or trade restrictions in the face of the Zika virus outbreak. Rough Cut (no reporter narration).

WHO wants to prevent inappropriate trade or travel limits due to Zika

ROUGH CUT – NO REPORTER NARRATION

The World Health Organization (WHO) has called an emergency meeting on Zika virus on Monday partly to ensure that national authorities do not impose inappropriate travel or trade restrictions, a senior WHO official said on Thursday.

WHO chief Margaret Chan said earlier that the agency would convene the emergency committee on the international response to the Zika virus outbreak that is suspected of a link to birth defects in Brazil

“This is an important consideration of the director-general in calling (the meeting) is to ensure that there are no inappropriate measures taken by member states in terms of travel or trade. That is a major consideration of the director-general,” WHO assistant director Bruce Aylward told reporters.

WHO expects the Zika virus, which is spreading through the Americas, to affect between three million and four million people, a disease expert said on Thursday.

The WHO’s director-general said the spread of the mosquito-borne disease had gone from a mild threat to one of alarming proportions.

Marcos Espinal, an infectious disease expert at the WHO’s Americas regional office, said: “We can expect 3 to 4 million cases of Zika virus disease”. He gave no time frame.

There is no vaccine or treatment for Zika, which is a close cousin of dengue and chikungunya and causes mild fever, rash and red eyes. An estimated 80 percent of people infected have no symptoms, making it difficult for pregnant women to know whether they have been infected.

Tags : Zika, Limits, travel, trade, Inappropriate, prevent, wants

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