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Richard Corcoran: Federal government needs to act now; mosquito season is here

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As we celebrated Mother’s Day with our families this weekend, I could not help but think of all the moms in the U.S., and all over the world, who have been affected by Zika in the last year. As a father of six, I know that all children bring challenges.  But a child born with microcephaly will present his or her parents with unique struggles. As we enter into the warm summer months, the threat of another outbreak is looming. That…

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CDC: Don’t donate sperm in 3 Florida counties due to Zika

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Men from three Florida counties shouldn’t donate sperm because of a small risk of spreading Zika, U.S. health officials said Monday. The guidance had previously applied to Miami-Dade County, the only place in Florida where there’s evidence mosquitoes spread the virus. But infections were reported in people in South Florida who couldn’t clearly be linked to Miami-Dade. On Monday, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said the advice should extend to two counties north of Miami — Broward and…

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In the Great Game, government fights for the White Walkers and the germs

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Life really does imitate Game of Thrones. Republicans, Democrats, Lannisters and Starks fight over White Houses and King’s Landings, but the future is trending in favor of the White Walkers and the germs. A timely reminder of The Coming Plague comes from USA TODAY investigative reporter Alison Young, who weighed in this week with new reporting on the Center for Disease Control’s (CDC) screw-ups in the handling of Ebola and other deadly viruses and bacteria. The CDC dragged its feet for…

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Vern Buchanan praises inclusion of $1.1B for Zika in government funding bill

in The Bay and the 'Burg/Top Headlines by

U.S. Rep. Vern Buchanan praised the inclusion of $1.1 billion to combat the Zika virus in a must-pass government funding bill expected to be approved by Congress this week. “Florida urgently needs additional money to help fight Zika and protect our citizens,” the Sarasota Republican said in a statement Tuesday. “Funding should have been approved months ago but Washington was too busy engaged in ugly politics at the expense of public health.” Under the agreement, Buchanan said $933 million will…

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Patrick Murphy and David Jolly ask Congressional leaders to pass Zika funding bill now

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After an eight-week break, Congress has returned to Washington this week, and the matter mostly on the minds of Florida’s delegation is to somehow finding a way to break the logjam regarding funding for the Zika virus. On Wednesday, Jupiter Democratic Rep. Patrick Murphy and Pinellas County Republican Congressman David Jolly penned a letter to the leaders in the House and Senate — Speaker Paul Ryan, Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and Minority Leader Harry Reid — calling on them to take immediate action to pass emergency funding to…

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Vern Buchanan demands immediate vote on Zika funding

in The Bay and the 'Burg/Top Headlines by

Congressman Vern Buchanan, in a letter sent Thursday to congressional leaders, called for an immediate vote on emergency Zika funding when Congress returns to Washington next week. “Hundreds of people have been infected in my home state of Florida as the disease continues to spread,” the Sarasota Republican wrote. “Our nation’s leading health officials at the Centers for Disease Control have made clear they need money now to contain Zika and develop a vaccine.” This week, the head of the…

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Pinellas officials say they are combatting mosquitoes, Zika

in The Bay and the 'Burg/Top Headlines by

Gov. Rick Scott on Tuesday announced a new case of Zika in Pinellas, bringing the total cases in the county to 10. The nine cases that had already been identified as of Monday by the Department of Health were all travel-related. The 10th was not. It was locally transmitted, meaning that mosquitoes in the area are infected with the virus. Zika disease is caused by the Zika virus, which is spread to people primarily through the bite of an infected mosquito,…

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