People are finally rethinking the whether it is wise to continue with the plan to hold the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro. The Zika virus is still in full epidemic mode, continuing to spread across the globe. Brazil has been the country to suffer the most, and Rio de Janeiro is still the place with the highest number of cases in Brazil. With no end in sight, officials and athletes alike are beginning to question the plan to hold the Olympic Games there this summer.
Health experts across the world are insisting that the games need to be postponed, moved to another location, or even canceled. Athletes are beginning to question whether they should still compete, and some have already pulled out. Canadian health expert Dr. Amir Attaran stated that holding the Olympics in Rio will bring about “a full-blown global health disaster.” And, really, it seems pretty obvious to me that holding the biggest sporting event in the world in a city ravaged by the Zika virus is not the smartest decision. Dr. Attaran added, “In particular, it cannot possibly help when an estimated 500,000 foreign tourists flock into Rio for the Games, potentially becoming infected, and returning to their homes where both local Aedes mosquitoes and sexual transmission can establish new outbreaks.” I’m inclined to agree.
Do you think the Olympic Games should still be held in Rio de Janeiro? What should Olympics officials do?