Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Stopping Pregnancies in South America

Yesterday I wrote about the Salvadoran government telling women not to get pregnant for two years because of the Zika virus. I hadn't known that Colombia and Ecuador had done the same, as did Brazil. I'm still trying to get my head around the long-term implications, assuming the calls are actually heeded (which is open to question). If so, then at a minimum you'll end up with demographic "dents" (for lack of a better word) which will be felt later when the size of the working-age population is smaller.

But this scary stuff:

Nearly 4,000 suspected cases of microcephaly have been reported in Brazil since October, compared with fewer than 150 cases in the country in all of 2014.

Incidentally, the role of mosquitoes in Latin America would be a great topic for research. Their effect on the development of the Panama Canal is legendary, and in general fighting them has been a highly political activity. This current Zika virus crisis shows how pervasive (and political) they continue to be.


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