Zika Virus and your dreams of leaving NYC for a Winter holiday

The second largest snow storm in New York City’s history is melting away and so comes the time of year where we dream of walking on sandy beaches in the warm sunshine.  However if you are pregnant or thinking about becoming pregnant, traveling to Central America, most of South America, and certain Caribbean Islands, is sadly not a safe option at this time.

I’m sure many of you have read about the Zika Virus. This mosquito born virus has spread quickly through numerous Latin American countries and parts of the Caribbean.  It is quite serious if an infected mosquito bites a pregnant woman as it can cause serious birth defects to her baby.  There is evidence that it can be sexually transmitted so even if your partner is infected, you could be at risk. Some countries struggling with this terrible health issue are even recommending that women not get pregnant for the next 2 years.

Here is an informative article from the New York Times about the virus.   It also includes where not to travel if you are pregnant.

If you need up to date information you can always go to one of my favorite sources: The World Health Organization.  “The World Health Organization (WHO) is a specialized agency of the United Nations (UN) that is concerned with international public health.”

Here is excellent specific information on the Zika Virus at WHO.

On a brighter note, the United States and Brazil are working on a vaccine together, but this will clearly take some time.