Long before Meghan Markle’s pregnancy was officially announced by Kensington Palace, there were already rumors that there was only a small chance that the Duchess was pregnant. People pointed out that Markle and Prince Harry were scheduled to visit Fiji and Tonga during their first international tour, which carries travel advisories for people who are pregnant or looking to become pregnant.
This is because the Zika virus can result in serious complications for the baby, which can include congenital anomalies and microcephaly, detailed Town & Country. This means that people are advised to avoid becoming pregnant for six months after returning home from Zika-risk countries. The CDC, on the other hand, recommends a waiting period of three months. Also, it’s recommended for pregnant women to avoid traveling in Zika-risk areas.
Royal fans took to Twitter to reveal their concerns about their upcoming travels. One person noted the following.
“Aren’t Harry & Meghan supposed to head to island nations after Australia that have the Zika virus? Seems…medically questionable.”
Another user said, “Shee-*t – Pacific Zika Virus risk anyone? She is heading for two Pacific islands!”
Even before the baby news was announced, people were sure the Duchess wasn’t pregnant because she’s planning on going to Tonga and Fiji.
“She’s goin [sic] to Fiji…risk of zika virus for pregnant women…if Meghan announces she isn’t going then I’ll believe [she’s pregnant].”
Someone else pointed out, however, that things aren’t always so easily planned.
“I know everyone is saying that pregnancy would be not a good idea due to Meghan visiting Zika areas, but pregnancy sometimes just happens and is not always planned.”
Also worth noting is that Kensington Palace told the Daily Mirror that the royal couple will be going through with their original itinerary, detailed the Sun.
“The Duke and Duchess sought medical advice about the risk of the Zika virus on the islands of Fiji and Tonga and there will be no change to the planned schedule.”
The couple obviously made an informed decision to follow through with their engagements, which should alleviate royal fans’ fears about the Zika virus.
Despite a Zika Virus Infection scare, Duchess of Sussex Meghan Markle who is pregnant will visit Fiji and Tonga. Zika Infection causes 'microcephaly' in feotus. #meghanmarkle #HarryandMeghan #princeharry @kensintonroyal pic.twitter.com/SPUeGZwNbd— isheeta (@isheetab) October 15, 2018
The news also comes as the royal couple prepares to jet off on their tour. They’ll be attending a whopping 76 engagements in Australia, Fiji, Tonga, and New Zealand, detailed the Standard. The trip kicks off tomorrow, which only gives people a short amount of time to digest the happy news before the couple embarks on a very busy schedule.