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CDC’s Frieden: Private Sector Stepping up to Combat Zika, Congress Should Too

June 14, 2016
Writing at the White House blog, CDC Director Dr. Tom Frieden says his colleagues working in the CDC’s birth defect center tell him they’ve never seen such cause for alarm.
“It's been more than 50 years since we've discovered a birth defect linked to a virus – and never before have we seen this result from a mosquito bite.”

While you can avoid travel to areas where Zika is spreading [map], there is no vaccine for this virus that poses the biggest threat to pregnant women. As Dr. Frieden states, this an emergency that will require leaders – both in the public and private sector – to come together in order to protect the American people. The CDC Foundation, which helps the private sector assist the CDC protect more people from outbreaks, has been reaching out to businesses and philanthropic organizations to secure support for the fight against Zika. Frieden says the response has been “enthusiastic and generous,” but they’re finding that they don’t have the resources needed to protect Americans from the virus. Frieden writes that the Department of Health and Human Services has provided funding for labs, tests, and tracking, but it’s still not enough to respond to an epidemic of this size.
“Congress did the right thing with Ebola, and I am hopeful they will do the right thing with Zika.”

Read the full post here.