It has just been confirmed that the Zika virus has arrived in the United States after Beenie Man was found with the Zika virus.
According to XXL, the Grammy award-winning Jamaican reggae icon has cancelled his appearance on Drake’s seventh annual OVO Festival this weekend.
The Dancehall star posted his announcement via Instagram and showed his photo in a hospital bed.
“Jah know…dah week ya deal wid me a way!! ⚠ No visa fi mi Canada show (I apologize again to my fans in case you haven’t seen the press release) ⚠ Zika Virus hol’ mi ⚠ The same Zika mosquito gi mi dengue.???? Blood test, injections, pills. Wi a hol firm still. Selassie a guide I n I right through so once mi have life me a give thanks. #Unstoppable”
The Zika virus can be contracted by a mosquito bite, sexual intercourse, or from a pregnant woman to her baby. In Beenie Man’s case, the got the Zika virus from a mosquito. Aside from Zika, he also got dengue. Though dengue is now a curable disease, Zika isn’t.
According to Mother Jones, it has already been predicted that Zika would arrive in the U.S. However, there might be very little chance that it would spread as fast as people are expecting. Reports are noting that the Zika virus is only limited to one-square-mile in downtown Miami.
The major culprit of the Zika virus is named Aedes aegypti, or commonly known as the “lazy mosquito.” It only has a two-to-three week lifespan and it cannot fly lengthy distances.
At present, the Zika risk in the U.S. is said to be manageable since the public health officials will be doing whatever they can to eradicate the mosquitoes in the area.
US-Davis epidemiologist Chris Baker is also confident that the U.S. can survive the Zika virus epidemic.
“You would never see Zika virus, Chikungunya virus, or dengue virus sweep across the country the way West Nile did, even in the regions where these mosquitoes are. Because that’s just not how it works in our country.”
At the same time, investors are already supporting companies who are looking for the vaccine for Zika. According to CNN, Inovio and South Korea-based company GeneOne Life Science have already begun testing the GLS-5700 vaccine on humans.
“The incidences of viral infection and medical conditions caused by the virus are expanding, not contracting,” said Inovio CEO Dr. Joseph Kim in a press release about the clinical trial approval for GLS-5700.
After the announcement, the stocks on these companies rose up 70 percent. Even the shares on the GeneOne Life Science on the Seoul Stock Exchange has rose up 50 percent.
Hopefully, this burst in funding will help both companies to stop the Zika epidemic.
Nonetheless, Inovio CEO Kim has spoken to CNBC and Bloomberg and told them that they might still be years away from releasing the vaccine. The scientists would need to see the effectiveness of the vaccine before they could roll it out to the public.
Aside from Inovio and GeneOne, other global pharmaceutical companies like GlaxoSmithKline, Sanofi, and Merck were all testing out for the Zika vaccine.
This is just one sign of hope for Beenie Man who has been optimistic since the moment he found out about the disease.
Beenie Man has made multiple collaborations with names like Bob Marley.
Beenie Man’s most recent collaborations were his 2014 single, “Legendary” and his 2015 record, “Ghetto Youths Floss,” with another Dancehall artist, Demarco.
Beenie Man’s family, friends, and fans are all praying for his recovery. Hopefully, the vaccine for Zika could be made available soon.
[Photo by Mark Davis/Getty Images for BET]