Zika Threatens 1.6 Million Women of Childbearing Age

New research by scientists in the United States and United Kingdom estimates up to 1.65 million childbearing women in Central and South America could become infected by the virus.

Researchers from the WorldPop Project and Flowminder Foundation at the University of Southampton and colleagues from the University of Notre Dame and University of Oxford have also reported across Latin America and the Caribbean over 90 million infections could result from the initial stages of the spread of Zika.

Brazil is predicted to have the largest total number of infections due to its size and suitability for transmission, according to the team’s projections, noted in the paper Model-based projections of Zika virus infections published in Nature Microbiology.

“These projections are an important early contribution to global efforts to understand the scale of the Zika epidemic, and provide information about its possible magnitude to help allow for better planning for surveillance and outbreak response, both internationally and locally,” said Professor Andrew Tatem, geographer at the University of Southampton and WorldPop and Flowminder Director.

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