91,387 Zika virus cases confirmed in Brazil

Brasilia, April 27 (IANS) Brazil has confirmed 91,387 cases of Zika so far this year, including 7,584 pregnant women at risk of having babies with birth defects.

The health ministry on Tuesday said the number led to the conclusion that the incidence of Zika in Brazil amounts to 44.7 cases for every 100,000 inhabitants, EFE news reported.

The figure also showed the rapid spread of the virus, which was first detected in April 2015 and which has now been found in all 27 states of the country.

Though the first cases occurred in the impoverished northeast, it is currently the rich, well populated and developed southeast that has had the most Zika infections, with 35,505 cases reported compared with 30,286 in the northeast.

By states, Rio de Janeiro, which in 101 days will host the 2016 Olympic Games, has been hit the hardest, with 25,930 cases.

Up to now only three deaths have been confirmed to be directly related to Zika.

Between October 22, 2015, and April 16, 1,168 cases of microcephaly were confirmed in Brazil, while another 3,741 possible cases are still under study.

Out of all the microcephaly cases confirmed, the relation between the deformity and Zika has been established in 192 of them.

The relation between the virus and microcephaly was what obliged the health minister to declare a state of emergency nationwide last November and to intensify efforts to eliminate the Aedes aegypti mosquito, which transmits Zika, dengue and Chikungunya.



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