About 30 million people fly to the United States each year from countries in the Caribbean and Latin America that are currently affected by Zika. But experts say that it is unlikely Zika would spread as quickly or as widely in the United States, which has better mosquito control and different environmental conditions.
Air travel has been a factor in the spread of Zika, which is circulating in about two dozen countries, according to Isaac I. Bogoch, author of a recent study on the spread of Zika in The Lancet. About 2.7 million people travel from Brazil to the United States each year. In 2014, Brazil had more than 1.6 million cases of dengue, a disease related to Zika that is spread by the same mosquitoes. But dengue outbreaks in the United States remain rare.
Researchers have developed a map of areas where Zika could spread, based on factors such as climate and mosquito populations. But researchers caution that susceptibility does not mean an outbreak is likely. Wealthier countries tend to have better public health infrastructures, earlier disease detection and better mosquito control.
- Zika Virus: An Emerging Health Threat
- All the known cases of Zika virus in the World
- Where in the World is Zika virus?
- Mapping the Zika Virus
- The Zika virus
- Zika virus threatens US from abroad
- Risk of local Zika transmission