Saturday, April 23, 2016

Government officials are urgently warning employers in the United States to take major steps to protect their employees from getting the zika virus.As the outbreak worsens, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has issued new guidelines that are aimed at employers working in areas where the zika virus is a threat, according to a CDC statement.Those who work outdoors and are pregnant are most at risk, and employers should take preemptive steps to protect them, the CDC says.Although a full-scale breakout of the zika virus in the United States is a fairly low risk, the CDC warns that people should not underestimate their risk for getting the virus.Since zika is transmitted via mosquitoes, the best way to protect yourself is by wearing protection designed to stop mosquitoes from biting, like sprays and nettings, and avoiding stagnant water where mosquitoes like to breed.Currently, there is no vaccine to prevent zika, so the only protection against it is preemptive measures.“Zika virus is primarily spread through the bites of infected mosquitoes,” the CDC statement reads. “There is no vaccine to prevent Zika virus infection, and there is no specific treatment for people who become infected. Although Zika virus is primarily spread by infected mosquitoes, exposure to an infected person’s blood or other body fluids may also result in transmission.“Outdoor workers may be at the greatest risk of exposure to Zika virus,” it continues. “Some workers, including those working with insecticides in areas of active Zika transmission to control mosquitoes and healthcare workers who may be exposed to contaminated blood or other potentially infectious materials from people infected with Zika virus, may require additional protection. Although there are no reports of transmission of Zika virus from infected patients to health care personnel or other patients, minimizing exposure to body fluids is important to reduce the possibility of such transmission.”

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