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Zika Threat Explodes in Florida

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By    |   Wednesday, 13 Jul 2016 10:53 PM

The Zika virus has exploded in Florida — as new infections reported this week brought the total of known cases to 282, more than any other state than New York.

"The growing threat of the Zika virus as a full-blown public health crisis in the United States is a clear call to action," Florida Sen. Marco Rubio said Wednesday.

He chaired a Senate Foreign Relations subcommittee hearing on the virus, McClatchy reports.

Thirteen cases were reported in Florida on Monday, the senator said, and 129 of the total cases are in South Florida.

Rubio also noted that the Zika virus also had a strong presence in Puerto Rico, McClatchy reports.

Both states have about one million residents from Puerto Rico — and many of them travel back and forth or host visitors from the commonwealth, according to the report.

Congress is headed for a seven-week recess without addressing President Barack Obama's request for $1.9 billion in funds to combat the Zika virus and the birth defects it can cause has been stalled in Congress since February, Reuters reports.

Republicans in the House and Senate have signed onto a $1.1 billion Zika funding bill. But Democrats are balking over what they see as "poison pills" attached to the money that would deny funds to women's healthcare provider Planned Parenthood and ease some environmental provisions.

Democrats, who warn the current legislation will not pass the Senate, said on Tuesday that they offered to accept some Republican provisions. But Senate Republicans insist the bill cannot be altered.

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The Zika virus has exploded in Florida - as new infections reported this week brought the total of known cases to 282, more than any other state than New York. The growing threat of the Zika virus as a full-blown public health crisis in the United States is a clear call to...
Zika, virus, Florida
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2016-53-13
Wednesday, 13 Jul 2016 10:53 PM
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