Zika virus has been top of mind for many as it continues to spread at an alarming rate. Currently, there are 50 countries with active Zika transmission, ranging from sporadic to increasing or widespread. The growing concern around this outbreak has caused many to cancel or look for alternatives to their business plans in an effort to protect themselves and others from contracting the disease.

For example, a joint decision between Major League Baseball and the players’ union moved the planned two-game series between the Pittsburgh Pirates and the Florida Marlins from Puerto Rico-one of the areas with Zika-to the Marlins’ stadium in Miami. This decision was made to keep both players and fans safe from this virus. As the officials know how much baseball means to a lot of people, they decided against canceling the game, instead choosing to move it to a safer location. This means that baseball and sports betting fans will still be able to watch their favorite sports, whilst betting on Indiana betting apps to try and make a profit. Whilst baseball seems to be going ahead, there have been calls to cancel this year’s summer Olympics in Brazil, one of the hardest-hit Zika areas.

Despite the increasing fears, there are several ways you can protect yourself and your employees:

  • Continue to disseminate updated information as it becomes available.
  • Educate your staff on preventive measures, such as the types of insect repellent to use, protective clothing and equipment to wear, and lodging to select when traveling.
  • Pursue alternate travel plans when possible, especially if pregnant or if planning to become pregnant. This includes men whose partners intend on becoming pregnant, since the virus can be sexually transmitted.
  • Offer additional sick leave for anyone who may have contracted Zika after returning from travel to a Zika-affected area.

There are still several unknowns regarding the transmission of Zika: How likely are you to contract Zika if bitten? How likely will a fetus develop birth defects if its mother contracts Zika? How long after infection can it spread through sex? Until more is uncovered, it is important to begin planning for potential outbreaks around your locations, especially if your company currently has operations in or near Zika areas.

For more information on how to protect your employees, review the Preparis “Guidelines to Protect Your Employees from the Zika Virus” post and the CDC’s “Interim Guidance for Protecting Workers from Occupational Exposure to Zika Virus” factsheet. To help you build and maintain a culture of preparedness within you organization, visit the Knowledge Center of your portal or contact your Customer Success representative.