SOUTHCOM Chief Vows to Help U.S. Partner Nations Fight Zika Epidemic

first_img“It’s not going to go away,” he stated. “We have to deal with it. The idea is to buy time and minimize the consequences until we hopefully have a universally accessible vaccine.” The Zika virus is carried by Aedes aegypti mosquito. Physicians and public health officials believe the virus causes microcephaly, a condition in which infants are born with small heads and underdeveloped brains. This occurs in about one of every 100 pregnant women who test positive for the virus which has been detected in 31 countries and territories throughout the hemisphere. Medical officials believe the virus may also play a role in triggering Guillain-Barre Syndrome, an uncommon sickness of the nervous system that can lead to a fatal form of paralysis. SOUTHCOM’s efforts praised “Our Department of Defense, including U.S. SOUTHCOM, along with Health and Human Services, [the] U.S. Agency for International Development, the State Department and others, are part of a whole-of-government — indeed a whole — of-hemisphere — effort to confront and contain this threat,” he said. SOUTHCOM’s response “We’re in a very severe drought that dries up breeding sites,” Macaya added. “It’s also a windy time of the year, and not the best conditions for the Aedes aegypti mosquito. All this will change in May, and we have to be prepared.” “Many of you are probably wondering why a Naval officer from the U.S. Military is standing up here, instead of a physician or an entomologist,” Adm. Tidd told the audience. “I’ll be the first to admit: I don’t know as much as most people in this room about disease vectors or mosquito eradication programs. But I do know a thing or two about risk interconnections: almost every day I deal with how the security of our nation ties directly to the security of our neighbors to the south, how what happens on the streets of San Salvador and Tegucigalpa ripples inexorably across the streets of Tucson and Chicago.” Colombia has nearly 50,000 suspected cases and Brazil has 70,000, Farnsworth said, estimating the total economic impact of zika at $3.5 billion. “This was the last thing any country wants or needs, and there are political implications if the situation is not handled correctly,” Farnsworth stated. “We stand ready to lend our unique capabilities to support the broader Zika response and preparedness campaign,” Adm. Tidd said. “Our efforts are part of a coordinated whole-of-government approach to halt the spread of the Zika virus regionally and globally.” Adm. Tidd gave some examples of what SOUTHCOM’s bio-surveillance program has done so far: The CDC sent a team to Brazil to investigate connections between the Zika virus and birth defects. “Our government is working aggressively to combat the Zika virus and has requested more than $1.9 billion in emergency funding to enhance our ongoing efforts to prepare for and respond to it,” Adm. Tidd said. “If approved, these additional resources will help build on the U.S. government’s preparedness efforts and will support essential strategies to combat this virus.” Joint Task Force-Bravo, headquartered at the Soto Cano Air Base in Honduras, is using recurring medical readiness training exercises to emphasize vector control and personal protection throughout Central America; The U.S. Southern Command (SOUTHCOM) will use every tool in its arsenal to fight Zika as the mosquito-borne virus spreads throughout Latin America and the Caribbean. U.S. Navy Admiral Kurt W. Tidd, SOUTHCOM’s commander, made that pledge on March 22nd while addressing a conference organized by the Washington-based Council of the Americas. By Dialogo March 24, 2016 Because there is no treatment or vaccine for the virus, most efforts to combat the problem have focused on stopping the spread of mosquitoes. In mid-February, Macaya accompanied a four-member team from George Mason University’s Center for Biodefense and Infectious Diseases to Costa Rica, where they conducted research on vector-borne diseases in collaboration with local scientists. Hundreds of thousands of Nicaraguans live in Costa Rica, and that many now visiting the neighboring country will return once Easter break is over, Macayo noted with concern. “When they come back, will they be carrying the Zika virus?” he asked. “We also have people from El Salvador requesting refugee status in Costa Rica. Likewise, we have migrants coming from the south, so this issue of immigration and infectious diseases is intertwined.” Naval Medical Research Unit No. 6, hosted by the Peruvian Navy in Lima, has helped develop best practices in preventing the spread of diseases like malaria, diarrhea, dengue fever, influenza, and chikungunya — and is now on the front lines with SOUTHCOM’s partner nations in the fight against zika. SOUTHCOM is working very closely with the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) and various agencies such as USAID, the U.S. State Department and the Atlanta-based Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). “Teams of health professionals from a cross-section of the U.S. government, including the Defense Department, have come together with PAHO to help conduct needs assessments for regional ministries of health that seek to mitigate the effects of the mosquito that carries the virus,” Adm. Tidd explained. “We are also sharing our force health protection guidance with our partner ministries of defense, as they update their own policies and procedures to protect their people against this virus.” National Guard units from South Carolina, South Dakota, and Florida are supporting informational exchanges in Suriname and Guyana to train first responders on methods to prevent and contain vector-borne illnesses; Joining Adm. Tidd on the panel were Román Macaya, Costa Rica’s ambassador to the United States; Ana Ayala, chief of the Global Health Law Program at Georgetown University’s O’Neill Institute; Kelly Saldana, deputy director of the Office of Health, Infectious Diseases, and Nutrition at the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID); and Eric Farnsworth, vice president of the Americas Society/Council of the Americas. Macaya praised SOUTHCOM’s efforts toward that goal, saying Costa Rica — with only a dozen or so confirmed cases of zika — “has implemented aggressive actions to control mosquito populations, and we’re in our third week with zero new cases.” Yet that’s not totally a reflection of his country’s efforts; part of it is sheer luck, he noted. The funds will be used to bolster plans to implement mosquito control programs, quicken vaccine research and diagnostic development, provide for the testing and development of vaccines, and educating health care providers, pregnant women, and their partners on the dangers of the virus. The money will also strengthen health care capacity, especially to low-income families. “All of these engagements are part of SOUTHCOM’s broader effort to build disease surveillance and response capabilities in support of the Global Health Security Agenda,” Adm. Tidd stated, referring to an interagency program led by the CDC. “Coming together to prevent, detect, and fight every kind of biological danger and working with our partners to improve access to health systems are inherent parts of the U.S. government’s effort to promote a peaceful, prosperous, secure, and resilient Western Hemisphere.” last_img read more

Work has begun on the new Valamar Collection Marea Suites, which receives 5 * level facilities

first_imgValamar has started work on the new Valamar Collection Marea Suites 5 * hotel in the Borik area of ​​Poreč, which will welcome the 2019 season with 5 * level facilities. Valamar thus continues to develop the Borik zone through accommodation and the offer of more added value, and with this investment it plans to create 100 new jobs. The future Valamar Collection Marea Suites 5 * is designed for families with children and this investment will expand the offer of family vacations in Porec where guests will be able to enjoy V level services, luxury suites with sea views, more than 200 m2 attractive swimming pools, beaches, restaurants, sports facilities and Maro offer for children of all ages.Construction works have begun with the preparation of the construction site and the demolition of existing buildings, and part of the promenade along the beach will be fenced off from November 1, followed by construction and additional arrangement of the beach. Valamar points out that special care will be paid to arranging horticulture and planting new trees, plants and ornamental plants that are indigenous to the Istrian climate.The works have started according to plan, Valamar points out and emphasizes that they once again thank their fellow citizens for their understanding due to the limited access to this part of the promenade during the works during this autumn and winter. “Since 2017, HRK 4,6 million has already been invested in the beach in front of Valamar Pinia, in the arrangement of a sandy beach for families with small children, additional stairs to the sea, reconstruction of the protective embankment along the breakwater (schoolchildren), public lighting and showers, locker rooms , umbrellas, deck chairs and other equipment. Almost one million kuna was invested in Trattoria La Pentol in Borik, while 2,4 million kuna was invested in arranging the beach in front of the Pical hotel”They pointed out from Valamar. In 2019, Valamar Riviera continues with a strong investment cycle In 2019, Valamar Riviera continues with a strong investment cycle in the amount of HRK 752 million, which is a continuation of the company’s investment strategy in repositioning its portfolio towards high value-added offers and services.One of the major investments this year is certainly the repositioning of the current Istra Sunny Camping 2 * in Funtana in Poreč. This camp is entering the second phase of the investment to become a 5 * camping resort next season called Istra Premium Camping Resort and with the ambition to become one of the better camps in Europe.last_img read more

GPL REVIEW: Kenichi breaks another Hearts jinx in 1-0 Chelsea away win

first_imgHearts of Oak moved to top of the league after securing a first ever defeat of Berekum Chelsea at the dreaded Golden City Park on Sunday.The last time Chelsea lost at home was on the 30th December 2012, a 0-1 defeat to Amidaus and since then, they have gone four years without losing a match at home. This was the visitors’ first win in eight years at the Stadium.Also, the Phobians had not recorded a win at the Golden City Park since 2008. This win is also notable because Kenichi had, only two weeks ago, led Hearts to a first win in nine years in Obuasi This game in Berekum was an end-to-end affair from the blast of the whistle in the early stages of the games.Hearts protested for a penalty in the 17th minute after Paul Acquah’s ball struck Nicholas Opoku of Chelsea in the penalty box but the referee waved play on.A minute later, Samuel Yeboah had a great opportunity to open the scoring but his shot went straight to the side netting. The home side took the game to the visitors afterwards, pilling all the pressure for a first goal but held on to curtail the series of attack to end the first half goalless moving to the dressing room.After the break, the host continued with the pressure whiles Hearts kept sitting back clearing their lines.On the 59th minute, Paul Acquah broke on a counter attack and set Cosmos Dauda who put Samuel Yeboah through to finish off by opening the scoring for Hearts.Nine minutes after, substitute Foovi Aguide struck a long range shot only to have it rattle the crossbar.Hearts were under extreme pressure from the host as they sat deep into their half, but the host only had goalkeeper Samuel Akurugu to beat as he made fine and point blank saves to keep his team in the game. Aguidi had an opportunity in the 90th minute to increase the tally but his shot went way over.The match ended with the Phobians beating Chelsea at home to go top of the league table after Wa All Stars also succumbed to a 3-1 defeat to Techiman City.Berekum Chelsea Line upJohn Moosie, Nicholas Opoku, Richard Adjei, Justice Anane, Osei Bonsu, Kingsley Effah, Brimah Mohammed, Charles Appiah, Ameyaw, Asiwome Fumador, Richard OtiHearts of Oak Line up Samuel Akurugu, Robin Gnagne, Fatawu Mohammed, Kenndy Appiah, Richard Akrofi, Mustapha Essuman, Isaac Mensah, Ashitey Ollenu, Samuel Yeboah, Cosmos Dauda, Paul Acquahlast_img read more