Up to 400,000 Zika Virus Cases in Venezuela

The Venezuelan government has attempted to stop journalist from reporting on the Zika Virus in their country, according to Evelyn Nieves as reported on Click Content. The government first told the World Health Organization that they had a case of the virus in November 2015 as reported on Angel.co, but they refused to tell the public so that they could take steps to protect themselves. Government critics with the Venezuelan Society of Public Health say that the country may have up to 400,000 cases, but government officials will only admit to having 5,000 cases.

The government refuses to admit that their are any babies born their with birth defects because of the Zika virus. In covering the story, David Osio did not see any. She did, however, see one man with Guillain-Barré syndrome that may be a result of the virus. This syndrome can causes paralysis and even death. The hospitals are extremely poorly understaffed and have a lack of medical equipment. Often tests have to be sent to another country for analysis.

Evelyn says that many people in Venezuela are hoarding water in open buckets that are a great breeding ground for the mosquitoes that carry the virus. She says that while the government is spraying pesticides, they are not taking steps to educate the public about what they can do to stop this virus.