FDA Asks Travelers to Zika Zones to Delay Blood Donations - NBC Bay Area
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FDA Asks Travelers to Zika Zones to Delay Blood Donations

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    FDA Asks Travelers to Zika Zones to Delay Blood Donations
    AP
    In this Jan. 27, 2016, file photo, an Aedes aegypti mosquito is photographed through a microscope at the Fiocruz institute in Recife, Pernambuco state, Brazil. The mosquito behind the Zika virus seems to operate like a heat-driven missile of disease. Scientists say the hotter it gets, the better the mosquito that carries Zika virus is at transmitting a variety of dangerous illnesses.

    People who have traveled to places where the Zika virus is circulating should wait a month before donating blood, just to be safe, the Food and Drug Administration said Tuesday, NBC News reported.

    It's the latest just-in-case measure announced by U.S. health officials, who are watching the rapid spread of Zika across Latin America and the Caribbean.

    "We are issuing this guidance for immediate implementation in order to better protect the U.S. blood supply," said Dr. Luciana Borio, the FDA's acting chief scientist.

    Even if Zika isn't around, people who have Zika-like symptoms, such as a rash, should put off donating blood for four weeks, the FDA said.

    "Individuals considered to be at risk include: those who have had symptoms suggestive of Zika virus infection during the past four weeks, those who have had sexual contact with a person who has traveled to, or resided in, an area with active Zika virus transmission during the prior three months, and those who have traveled to areas with active transmission of Zika virus during the past four weeks," the FDA said in its new guidance.