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Table of Contents   
LETTER TO THE EDITOR  
Year : 2017  |  Volume : 10  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 277-278
Zika virus disease: The current status and necessity to implement Strategic Response Framework


Department of Community Medicine, Shri Sathya Sai Medical College and Research Institute, Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India

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Date of Web Publication5-May-2017
 

How to cite this article:
Shrivastava SR, Shrivastava PS, Ramasamy J. Zika virus disease: The current status and necessity to implement Strategic Response Framework. Ann Trop Med Public Health 2017;10:277-8

How to cite this URL:
Shrivastava SR, Shrivastava PS, Ramasamy J. Zika virus disease: The current status and necessity to implement Strategic Response Framework. Ann Trop Med Public Health [serial online] 2017 [cited 2019 Nov 20];10:277-8. Available from: http://www.atmph.org/text.asp?2017/10/1/277/205569
Dear Sir,

Since the confirmation of the first case of Zika virus disease in May 2015, the disease has affected thousands of patients over the last 1 year and even has been declared as a public health emergency of international concern.[1] In fact, the recent estimates suggest that till date 57 nations/territories and nine nations have reported mosquito-borne and person-to-person transmission respectively.[2] As the virus is known to circulate in Africa, the Americas, Asia, and the Pacific region, it has been predicted that the current outbreak could infect up to 4 million individuals, with maximum number of cases being reported in Brazil.[1],[2],[3]

The biggest challenge associated with the disease has been a simultaneous rise in the incidence of microcephaly and neurological disorders, including Guillain–Barré syndrome.[2],[4] As there is no specific treatment or vaccine currently available for the disease even after the passage of more than 5 decades since it was detected, lacunae in the preparedness were exposed.[1],[5] In fact, the health system had no answers to respond to the neurological abnormalities in newborns, and the clinicians were empty handed, and had no option other than giving advice to avoid mosquito bites, or delay conception, or avoid travel to areas with ongoing transmission.[1] In addition, as most of the exposed pregnant women never received the complete assurance, they have to live in total distress till the fetal brain anomaly is ruled out.[1],[4]

Further, as the care of a child with congenital malformations requires catastrophic expenditures, it results in a serious economic burden on the families.[3],[4] At the same time, the global stakeholders have to also find a solution to the environmental factors like a poor socioeconomic status owing to which the families cannot afford window screens/insect repellents, or a compulsion to store water in containers in the absence of piped water supply or poor sanitation facilities.[1],[5] Amidst all the existing options, the best way to prevent the disease is by ensuring protection against mosquito bites.[5]

A Strategic Response Framework has been developed by the World Health Organization to enable comprehensive prevention and control of the disease in both affected and unaffected nations.[2] This framework broadly looks after strengthening of the surveillance, response activities, and research sector through a systematic collaboration between various national and international stakeholders.[1],[2],[5] It comprises of a range of interventions like enhancing the surveillance of the disease and its potential complications, strengthening the capacities of the nations in the field of risk communication and laboratory network to facilitate the detection of virus, conducting training sessions for different cadres of health workers to enable diagnosis-clinical management-vector control, extending assistance to implement appropriate vector control measures on a large scale, developing specific guidelines for the clinical care and follow-up for both general population and high-risk groups, and prioritizing research activities in different unexplored areas of the disease.[1],[2],[5]

To conclude, the current outbreak of Zika virus disease has acquired the status of an international public health emergency, which was never the case in its previous appearances. However, in order to contain the disease, the need of the hour is to implement the proposed recommendations and fast-track the research activities.

Acknowledgement

SRS contributed in the conception or design of the work, drafting of the work, approval of the final version of the manuscript, and agreed for all aspects of the work.

PSS contributed in the literature review, revision of the manuscript for important intellectual content, approval of the final version of the manuscript, and agreed for all aspects of the work.

JR contributed in revising the draft, approval of the final version of the manuscript, and agreed for all aspects of the work.

Financial support and sponsorship

Nil.

Conflicts of interest

There are no conflicts of interest.

 
   References Top

1.
World Health Organization One year into the Zika outbreak: how an obscure disease became a global health emergency; 2016. Available from: http://who.int/emergencies/zika-virus/articles/one-year-outbreak/en/index4.html. [Last accessed on 2016 May 5].  Back to cited text no. 1
    
2.
World Health Organization Zika situation report 5 May 2016;2016. Available from: http://who.int/emergencies/zika-virus/situation-report/5-may-2016/en/. [Accessed 2016 May 5].  Back to cited text no. 2
    
3.
Slavov SN, Otaguiri KK, Kashima S, Covas DT. Overview of Zika virus (ZIKV) infection in regards to the Brazilian epidemic. Braz J Med Biol Res 2016;49:e5420.  Back to cited text no. 3
    
4.
Brasil P, Sequeira PC, Freitas AD, Zogbi HE, Calvet GA, de Souza RV. et al.,Guillain-Barré syndrome associated with Zika virus infection. Lancet 2016;387:1482.  Back to cited text no. 4
    
5.
Hajra A, Bandyopadhyay D, Hajra SK. Zika virus: A global threat to humanity: A comprehensive review and current developments. N Am J Med Sci 2016;8:123-8.  Back to cited text no. 5
    

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Correspondence Address:
Dr. Saurabh R Shrivastava
3rd Floor, Department of Community Medicine, Shri Sathya Sai Medical College and Research Institute, Ammapettai Village, Thiruporur Guduvanchery Main Road, Sembakkam Post, Kanchipuram, Tamil Nadu
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/1755-6783.205569

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