Updated 06:30 AM EDT, Fri, Oct 23, 2020

Colombia Announces First Deaths Related to Zika Outbreak

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Colombia has made its first grim announcement following the massive spread of the Zika Virus - three people who were infected with the disease have died. Reports said that the patients were also infected with a similar disease that attacks the human nervous system and would have ultimately caused the patient to be permanently paralyzed.

The Zika Virus has spread across the Americas, with Brazil being said to be the most widely. In fact, President Dilma Rousseff has already urged citizens to help the government in widespread efforts to eliminate all possible breeding grounds of the Aedes Aegypti mosquito, which is also known to bring about dengue and yellow fever. 

According to a report with BBC, Colombia is said to be only second to Brazil when it comes to the number of pregnant women who have shown signs of being infected with the Zika Virus. The report said that 2,000 pregnant women were shown to have exhibited signs of the Zika Virus. 

The country's health minister, Alejandro Gaviria, said that two other deaths, caused by Guillain-Barré syndrome were still under investigation as to whether or not they were related to the Zika virus, a report with The Guardian said.  

It was earlier reported that three patients from the city of Medellin all perished from the complications of Zika. The health authorities in the city reported that the victims, a man and a woman, also exhibited signs of the Guillain-Barré syndrome. The earliest known death for the Zika Virus was reported earlier in November. The victim was a male. 

The Colombian health minister added that there is believed to be over 100 cases of the serious autoimmune disorder that were related to the Zika virus. There are uncontrolled fears in the country that conditions will only grow worse as many have already viewed Zika's effects in Brazil. However, Gaviria added that so far there are no reported cases of microcephaly in the country. The minister also said that should there be any cases of microcephaly in the future remains uncertain for now. 

Microcephaly is a strange and tragic condition in which the newborn infant's head and brain are severely deformed, leading to complications in breathing. The number of birth defects in Brazil has been alarmingly high and there are those who doubt its link with Zika. Gaviria has admitted that the medical world is still learning the mysteries of Zika, which has no cure as of the moment. 

Under law, Colombian women have the right to opt for abortion should the pregnancy be the result of criminal acts such as rape or sexual abuse. Women can also abort fetuses with a "severe malformation" or if the woman's life is put in danger.

Even in Brazil, the topic of abortion has come into debate, especially with the cases of microcephaly in the country. 

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