Jill Duggar and Derick Dillard’s concerned fans have been waiting for the couple to speak out about the devastating Zika virus that has rapidly spread throughout Latin America and the Caribbean. Jill and Derick are working as missionaries in Central America, so their fans are worried that they might catch the disease. However, Derick’s latest Instagram post is an indication that they aren’t taking it very seriously.
The Zika virus has been linked to severe birth defects that can be deadly, and some officials are even advising women to avoid getting pregnant if they live in countries affected by outbreaks of the mosquito-borne illness. The virus is a serious problem, but Jill Duggar’s husband didn’t address his fans’ many concerns about it in his first mention of the devastating disease. Instead, he shared the smiling Instagram photo below.
“I knew I could count on Walmart to have what I need to combat that Zika Virus! #beprepared #zika,” Derick Dillard captioned the picture.
The sign on the left could be a clue as to where exactly in Central America Jill Duggar and Derick Dillard are currently at—La Despensa de Don Juan is a trade name that Walmart operates under in El Salvador. The supermarket has multiple locations in San Salvador, the country’s capital city.
According to the New York Times, government officials in El Salvador are so concerned about the spread of the Zika virus that they’re advising women in the country to avoid getting pregnant for the next two years. Many of Derick and Jill’s fans think that the couple should be just as worried about it.
“You’re just thinking about this now??? Zika was reported in Central America months ago You need to he [sic] more proactive and less reactive,” one Instagram commenter wrote in response to Derick Dillard’s Instagram post.
“You should have bought condoms to protect your future children from the virus given that your now resident country is advising all women abstain from pregnancy,” another commented.
Many other commenters echoed the sentiment that Derick Dillard and Jill Duggar should invest in some form of birth control, but the couple might not heed this advice—as Us Weekly reports, Jill and Derick don’t believe in trying to prevent pregnancy. Jill has said that she and Derick are leaving the number of kids they have up to God, and she teased that she and her husband might return home to Arkansas with another baby after their mission trip ends.
“We came to Central America as a family of three and we could go home as a family of four,” Jill Duggar said during last year’s Jill & Jessa: Counting On special.
Fans are so concerned about Jill Duggar getting infected with Zika because it may cause horrific birth defects like microcephaly, a condition marked by an abnormally small head. The virus hasn’t been definitively linked to any birth defects yet, but many researchers strongly believe it causes this condition. It’s also highly likely that microcephaly isn’t the only debilitating birth defect that pregnant women need to worry about. According to Gizmodo, the virus was recently found in the body of a stillborn infant that had “almost no brain tissue.” This is a condition known as hydranencephaly.
Some research has shown that the Zika virus can be sexually transmitted, so pregnant women in affected areas also have to worry about their partners carrying it.
As the Inquisitr previously reported, Jill Duggar and her family members are anti-choice when it comes to abortion. Many citizens in El Salvador share the Duggars views, and the country has made abortion illegal even if a mother’s life is at stake. However, as NPR reports, the Zika virus has sparked a serious discussion about whether Salvadoran women should be allowed access to the procedure.
According to the Washington Post, two Zika-infected women in the United States have already decided to terminate their pregnancies. One of the women found out that her fetus had severe brain abnormalities when she was 20 weeks pregnant.
Jill Duggar and Derick Dillard will be premiering on March 15, when the Duggar family’s new series, Jill & Jessa: Counting On, returns to TLC. Perhaps Jill and Derick have avoided sharing their thoughts about the Zika virus on social media or their family blog because they’ve filmed a segment about it for the show.
Do you think Jill Duggar and her husband should be using birth control in addition to doing everything they can to protect themselves from mosquito bites? Sound off below!
[Image via Jill Duggar/Instagram]