First Zika Birth Defects Confirmed in Harris County as Congress Goes on Break

FIRST ZIKA BIRTH DEFECTS CONFIRMED IN HARRIS COUNTY AS CONGRESS GOES ON BREAK Legacy Montrose Clinic, 1415 California St., Montrose, Houston (12)On Friday Congress left for a 7-week recess without approving any funding to deal with the potential for the Zika virus to spread in the US; the break started just 2 days after Harris County Public Health confirmed the county’s first case of a baby born with Zika-related microcephaly. While no home-grown cases of the virus have yet been reported in Texas, Baylor’s Dr. Peter Hotez tells Maggie Fox that local spread “might already have started on the Gulf Coast and we would have missed it,” noting that federal funding would have given a boost to underprepared local agencies in mosquito-heavy Southern states. Hotez and other public health types say that the kinds of mosquitos that carry the virus (which are adapted to urban environments and are active during the day) are able to breed anywhere from a drip pan in a suburban refrigerator to the perennial piles of illegally dumped tires around Fifth Ward. Healthcare workers at Legacy Community Health Services also tell Fox that Houston is “a perfect place for Zika to take hold and reach a crisis point,” particularly since the 16-plus percent of Texans who are uninsured aren’t likely to seek treatment and get diagnosed.  [NBC] Photo of Legacy Community Health Services building at 1415 California St.: Candace Garcia

8 Comment

  • You say that as if congress and some random funding to some useless bureaucracy could do anything about it. Thanks for your HOT TAKE

  • “Zika-related microcephaly”

    This means Zika didn’t cause the defect just as the scientific data suggest.

    Microcephaly is linked to herbicide, larvicide, insecticides used in developing countries that are unregulated. Brazil is open season for chemical companies to do real world testing that would never happen in the U.S.

    Zika is an old virus well known since the 30s. Strange to link microcephaly to an old well know virus.

  • kjb434, I thought the WHO already declared an overwhelming scientific-consensus that Zika itself is causing a particularly nasty type of microcephaly? Something about the recent studies meeting 4 of 7 shepard’s critieria and etc. etc.

  • @kjb434: Infecting animals with the current strains of Zika causes brain defects.

  • No question Zika causes birth defects, but it is worth nothing that the federal government has funding available from a previous appropriation which it isn’t spending.

  • @kjb434
    “Strange to link microcephaly to an old well know virus.”
    Yeh really strange for the CDC to establish a causal link between the two. Maybe you should send them a letter and tell them what a bunch of ignoramuses they are.

  • HeightsWalmart, the UTMB Galveston Center for Tropical Disease Research is one of, if not THE premier research institution for investigating and finding ways to control for infections from tropical diseases. It is hardly a “useless bureaucracy”, and your comment is frankly insulting to the professional men and women who work there. Their mission is to keep you and me healthy and safe.

  • What does this have to do with real-estate, urban planning etc.?