Zika’s Never Ending Emergency

“As far as most of the world is concerned, the Zika crisis, first identified in Brazil in 2015, is over,” writes Poonam Daryani, the 2017 Johns Hopkins-Pulitzer Center Global Health Reporting Fellow.

However, caregivers for more than 14,000 Brazilian children born with suspected congenital Zika syndrome—many facing a lifelong need for costly, specialized care—know otherwise. The physical, mental and financial tolls are staggering. And low-income, young, single women of color will bear most of the cost.

Government disability benefits and services don’t come close to covering the needs. “Everything, from the free transportation to the minimum salary, has been focused on either the mosquito vector or the babies—not the mother,” said Gestos project advisor Juliana César.

These mothers are mobilizing, though. They're organizing support groups to help each other out and demanding that the government step up its response.

Poonam Daryani, Hopkins Bloomberg Public Health Magazine

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