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School of Medicine
Zika Virus: What You Should Know
Learn more about the origins of the Zika virus and how you can protect yourself.
Zika virus was first discovered in Uganda in the 1940s. Since then, small outbreaks have appeared in Asia and Africa, but symptoms were generally mild and did not appear to have any long-term effects.
In 2015, the Zika virus began spreading throughout the Americas. It was discovered that Zika can cause fetal microcephaly, as well as other neurologic abnormalities. This discovery and the proliferation in cases led to the World Health Organization (WHO) declaring Zika virus an international public health emergency. The WHO recently removed that designation, but still cites the need for continued efforts to address the disease.
Johns Hopkins Medicine has considerable expertise in the area of infectious disease. Our experts have skills and ongoing research that are helping to answer important questions about Zika, including potentially related health concerns, vaccination and treatment.
The health and safety of our patients, their families and our employees are of utmost importance. At our hospitals, screening procedures have been implemented with a focus on recent travel. And we are actively examining this continuously changing situation to ensure the well-being of our patients and employees.
Facts at Your Fingertips
Answers to Common Questions
Find out answers to common questions about the Zika virus, including why pregnant women are particularly affected.
Zika Virus: What You Need to Know
Discover more information about Zika virus, related health concerns and the current state of vaccines.