Earlier this month, Major League Baseball (MLB) announced that a game scheduled in Puerto Rico next week between the Miami Marlins and Pittsburgh Pirates would be relocated to Miami due to player concerns about Zika on the island.
Now it’s being reported that the USA Olympic swimming team will move their pre-Olympic training camp from Puerto Rico to Atlanta (Georgia Tech aquatic center) also over Zika concerns.
According to a letter from USA Swimming national team director, Frank Busch, “As part of our preparations for the Olympic Games this summer, we have been closely monitoring the current situation with the Zika virus. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and other health experts in the field of science and medicine, our athletes would be highly exposed to the Zika virus in Puerto Rico.
“With this information, the national team division has decided to relocate the second camp to Atlanta.”
Olympic swimmer Michael Phelps coach, Bob Bowman said it was the prudent thing to do.
However, Brazil, where the Summer Games will take place in August, is the country hit hardest by Zika. When asked about still competing in Rio but cancelling training in Puerto Rico, Bowman said, “Honestly, we can control it better in Rio,” he said.
“They’re taking every precaution they can. We’re talking about swimming in an indoor venue in the wintertime. Plus, we have other measures we can take. We just feel like that’s a much more controlled environment.”
Through May 5, Puerto Rico health authorities have reported 1,108 confirmed Zika cases, to include 139 pregnant women and one case of microcephaly. One Zika-related fatality has been reported.
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