Canada issues travel advisory over fear of Zika

Posted: Tuesday, September 13, 2016. 1:30 p.m. CST.


By BBN Staff: Yesterday, the Canadian Government updated its travel advisory for nine CARICOM nations including Belize, among a list of countries around the world.

The Canadian government is urging all its citizens traveling to the Bahamas, Belize, Dominica, Guyana, Haiti, Jamaica, Suriname, St. Lucia, and Trinidad and Tobago, to “exercise a high degree of caution.” The reason is because they are trying to prevent citizens from coming in contact with the Zika virus and people who may be infected with the disease.

The advisory warns that pregnant women and those planning a pregnancy should avoid traveling to those countries.

Zika is caused by a virus which is primarily spread by the bite of an infected mosquito. It can also be transmitted from an infected pregnant woman to her developing fetus. In addition, the Zika virus can be sexually transmitted and the virus can persist for an extended period of time in the semen of infected males.

Symptoms of Zika virus can include fever, headache, conjunctivitis and skin rash, along with joint and muscle pain. The illness is typically mild and lasts only a few days and the majority of those infected do not have symptoms. There is no vaccine or medication that protects against the Zika virus infection although trials are underway.

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