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Leaders In Washington Should Address Zika Immediately

Foreign Policy: Dear Washington: The Time to Prepare for Zika Has Come and Gone
Laurie Garrett, senior fellow for global health at the Council on Foreign Relations

“Dear presidential candidates, senators, and congressional representatives: … The time you’ve had to get a preparedness plan in order but have wasted twiddling thumbs and shifting around budgets to make it look like you were taking the threat of Zika seriously is over. … Partisan bickering about the lives of American babies is unconscionable. This is no time for grandstanding. … And here’s the thing: Americans aren’t stupid and won’t be hornswoggled. According to recent polls, most people in the United States know what Zika is and were concerned about it well before the virus infected Floridian Aedes aegypti mosquitoes. … Come on, congressional representatives and senators: This is a pandemic in progress. Reconvene immediately, negotiate a deal, focus on financing, and get the job — your job — done. Failure to do so will mean that every Zika-related birth defect, miscarriage, and paralysis case will be your fault” (8/1).

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Filling the need for trusted information on national health issues, the Kaiser Family Foundation is a nonprofit organization based in Menlo Park, California.