At the state level, Florida cases are being under-reported and San Diego spraying is being met with protests.
I noted that Senate Democrats protected the sacred cow of Planned Parenthood when they blocked a bill to fight the spread of the Zika virus in this country.
That decision now has consequences, as the coffers for the War against Zika are now running low.
Another government agency fighting Zika has run out of cash to do it, as Congress fights over whether and how to come up with more.
The National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases has spent all the money it has for work on Zika, says the agency’s director, Dr. Anthony Fauci. That includes money for further work on a Zika vaccine.
“I have no more money left for Fiscal Year 2016 that ends on Sept. 30,” Fauci told NBC News.
The Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA, which plans for public health emergencies)and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have already run through most of all of their borrowed Zika money.
Florida is on the frontline of this country’s battle against the pathogen. A disturbing analysis by experts indicate the state may be under-reporting the extent of the spread.
…Over the past month, as local Zika infections have spread beyond Miami-Dade, with cases cropping up in Broward, Palm Beach and Pinellas counties, Florida officials have:
▪ Stopped providing detailed information on epidemiological investigations into local Zika infections;
▪ Refused to identify all the locations where Zika-positive mosquitoes were trapped in Miami Beach;
▪ And under-reported the number of local Zika infections in Florida by excluding anyone who is not a state resident.
Not reporting local Zika infections to tourists is particularly egregious to Michael Osterholm, director of the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy at the University of Minnesota.
“That’s just wrong,” he said. “To get a true picture of what’s going on in Florida, you want to know, among anyone who was in Florida, who acquired it there. … That’s how it should be counted. If they’re not, then that sounds to me like they’re trying to minimize their number of cases.”
Some residents oppose the spraying, citing the potential for harmful effects. But county officials say the low concentration of naled won’t harm them.
“We are concerned that the naled actually has more of a potential risk of creating the problems we are trying to avert than the actual concern with Zika,” area resident Brik Viera said.
In San Diego, the Department of Environmental Health’s spraying has been meet with protests by residents.
Several residents posted signs asking the county not to spray on their property. One person stood in the center of Market Street wearing a gas mask.
Thelmi Rivera is one of the residents who is concerned about the effects of the pesticides.
“They said it wasn’t harmful to pets and safe for our children but I don’t believe that,” Rivera said. “I mean if it’s killing off millions of bees, why wouldn’t it be harmful to pets and children.”
Currently, there are nearly 3,000 cases of Zika within the continental U.S. and over 18,000 when our territories are included. It looks like the War against Zika will be a long one…made longer by Democratic clinging to sacred cows.