WASHINGTON—The National Governors Association (NGA) today released the following statement on congressional funding of the Zika virus:
“The nation is on the threshold of a public health emergency as it faces the likely spread of the Zika virus. As with all such emergencies, advance planning and preparation is essential to prevent injury and death.
A key component to averting infectious disease outbreaks is to prevent incidence levels from reaching a critical ‘tipping point,’ after which there is a rapid increase in the number of infections. This is particularly true of the Zika virus—the most important way we can protect people is to minimize infections and prevent a concentration of cases, which can lead to outbreak and children born with severe, lifelong birth defects such as microcephaly.
As Congress returns from recess today, the nation’s governors urge the Administration and Congress to work together to reach agreement on the appropriate funding levels needed to prepare for and combat the Zika virus. We also ask they act as expeditiously as possible to ensure those funds are available to states, territories and the public at large.”