Schumer: Virus carried by mosquitos spreads to NYS

By Anna Norris

Credit: MGN Stills

Schumer: Virus carried by mosquitos spreads to NYS

June 22, 2014 Updated Jun 22, 2014 at 5:37 PM EDT

(WBNG Binghamton) A mosquito-borne virus from South America and the Caribbean has been found in fifteen U.S. states, including New York.

According to U.S. Senator Charles Schumer, the excruciating Chikungunya virus is on the rise.

Schumer said spectators leaving the world cup could speed up the global spread.

Schumer called on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to issue a health alert, so doctors can better identify and treat symptoms.

He also urged the Department of Homeland Security to set protocols similar to those used in the 2009 swine flu outbreak.

According to the senator, the virus is rarely fatal, but is extremely painful, causing fever and severe arthritic symptoms.

So far, Chikungunya has affected more than 100,000 individuals in the Caribbean.

Transmission of the virus has also been confirmed in Guyana and French Guiana, which indicates spread to South America, Schumer said.

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