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Zika in Haiti: SBHF's Response

February 8, 2016
Nurse holding bug repellent
St. Boniface nurses are working hard to distribute DEET repellent to their prenatal patients.

You have probably heard a lot about Zika virus in the news lately. The mosquito-borne virus is spreading across Brazil and other Central and South American countries, including Haiti. In Fond-des-Blancs we have clinically diagnosed Zika cases at St. Boniface Hospital.

Though Zika causes mild-to-moderate symptoms in most patients, the real concern is for pregnant women: significant birth defects have been associated with the virus. While a definitive connection between Zika infections and microcephaly in newborns has yet to be found, the Centers for Disease Control and the World Health Organization are recommending that pregnant women take extra precautions in affected countries. 

In response to this new public health emergency, SBHF is mobilizing our clinicians and our network of community health workers to distribute DEET to expectant mothers, educate communities about the dangers of standing water as breeding grounds for mosquitoes, and treat patients suffering from the symptoms of Zika. 

St. Boniface's strong network of hospital, clinic, and community health workers is here to provide education and care in precisely these kinds of situations. But our team, already stretched thin by record numbers of patients coming to the hospital, needs more resources to fight this new public health battle.

Click here to make a donation on Generosity.com to help us fight Zika and provide care to all of our patients during this outbreak.