Dr. Richard Pan Makes Appeal for Congressional Action as First Possible Mosquito to Human Transmission of Zika Virus is Detected in U.S.

State and local governments lack resources for Increased mosquito control and rapid disease detection

July 20, 2016

SACRAMENTO- Dr. Richard Pan, a pediatrician and California State Senator made the following statement upon the announcement from health officials that they are investigating the first possible non-travel related case of Zika transmission in the United States:

“In February, the President proposed $1.8 billion in emergency funding to increase readiness and local prevention and to support Zika research. As a physician in the California legislature, I sent a letter in May to the California Congressional delegation urging funding and action to prevent a Zika crisis. Without funding to be able to reliably screen for, prevent, or treat Zika infections, we could see many prenatally Zika-infected infants with brain injuries born in the U.S. by the end of the year. Our hope that Congress would act in time to prevent this catastrophe is passing; now our country’s health and safety demands leadership by Congress to at least mitigate this public health crisis. Neglecting Zika will result in a generation of children with permanent neurological damage.”

Dr. Richard Pan is a parent, small business owner, former UC Davis educator and pediatrician who represents the Sacramento area in the California State Senate. Dr. Pan is the author of a new law in California to protect all school children from vaccine-preventable diseases. He continues to practice medicine at WellSpace Health Oak Park Community Clinic, pursuing his passion for working with families to build healthier communities.

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