CDN PROFESSOR: POSTPONE, MOVE RIO OLMPICS DUE TO ZIKA THREAT
May 09, 2016
By Bob Komsic
The Rio Olympics this August should be postponed or held elsewhere because of the threat posed by the Zika virus epidemic in Brazil.
That’s the view of University of Ottawa professor of law and public health, Amir Attaran.
He argues in a commentary found in the Harvard Public Health Review, that the International Olympic Committee and World Health Organization are being irresponsible in letting the games go ahead in August.
Attaran adds it’s more important to delay or move the Games than to have unborn babies face a possible permanent disability.
”This (idea) is actually a plus. This isn’t a negative. This would be taking an unfortunate tragedy, known as Zika, and fashioning it into the world’s first ever, truly global Olympics.”
The virus has been found to cause under deverloped brains in babies born to women infect while pregnant.
It’s also potentially linked to neurological disorders in some infected adults and children.
Attaran says the roughly half-a-million visitors to the Olympic and Paralympic Games pose a threat of spreading the virus once they return home.
He believes the Olympics could be split up among cities that have hosted previous Summer Games, like London and Beijing.