Puerto Rico sees 436 Zika cases; 60 pregnant women infected

Zika virus
Transmission electron micrograph (TEM) of Zika virus. Credit: Cynthia Goldsmith/Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Zika cases in the U.S. territory of Puerto Rico have jumped to 436 so far this year.

Health Secretary Ana Rius says there are now 60 infected with Zika and five possibly Zika-linked cases of a paralyzing condition known as Guillain-Barre syndrome. Experts are trying to determine if the mosquito-borne virus might sometimes trigger Guillain-Barre and microcephaly, in which babies are be born with unusually small heads and sometimes brain damage. So far, two women with Zika have given birth to healthy babies, none with microcephaly.

Rius said Friday that she signed an administrative order requiring all medical insurance plans to cover contraceptive methods including hormonal implants to prevent the spread of Zika.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is helping Puerto Rico fight Zika.


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Puerto Rico sees rise in Zika cases, paralyzing condition

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