Israel Likely to Check Blood Supply for Zika

YERUSHALAYIM -
An Aedes aegypti mosquito, the mosquito behind the Zika virus, is photographed through a microscope at the Fiocruz institute in Recife, Pernambuco state, Brazil. (AP Photo/Felipe Dana, File)
An Aedes aegypti mosquito, the mosquito behind the Zika virus, is photographed through a microscope at the Fiocruz Institute in Recife, Pernambuco state, Brazil. (AP Photo/Felipe Dana, File)

As the Food and Drug Administration in the U.S. has begun recommending that all blood donations be screened for infection of the Zika virus, Israeli officials are considering doing so as well. According to health officials, Israel is “studying” the FDA decision and is likely to decide as soon as Sunday on instituting the rule.

Speaking to Yediot Acharonot, Professor Ayelet Shinar, director of blood services in Magen David Adom, said that her organization was considering checking its blood supply for Zika infection as well, given the rapid spread of the virus in the Western Hemisphere.

As many people travel back and forth between Israel and the infection points, including Brazil, Florida and other locations, examining the blood supply in Israel might be a good idea, she said.

Already instituted by Israeli authorities is a rule that individuals who have traveled within the last three months to areas where infections have been discovered must wait four weeks before donating blood.