Mosquito-Repellent Clothing for South Korean Olympic Athletes

by Shirley Johanna on  April 28, 2016 at 5:39 PM Tropical Disease News
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South Korean Olympic committee unveiled the long-sleeved training kits impregnated with mosquito repellent to help protect the country's Olympic athletes from the Zika virus at this year's games in Rio de Janeiro.
Mosquito-Repellent Clothing for South Korean Olympic Athletes
Mosquito-Repellent Clothing for South Korean Olympic Athletes

Brazil -- the epicentre of the mosquito-borne Zika virus outbreak -- hosts the 2016 Games in Rio de Janeiro from August 5 to 21.

The virus is blamed for birth defects in babies born to women infected with it. Brazil has reported around 1.5 million Zika infections out of a global total of 2.0 million.

The South Korean training kit and uniforms for the opening and closing ceremonies will cover most of the body and be infused with repellent, a spokeswoman for the Korean Olympic Committee said, but competition kit could not be similarly treated, due to strict regulations.

"But we will distribute mosquito-repellent sprays to the athletes and will also vaccinate them against other diseases that can be spread by mosquitoes just in case," the spokeswoman said.

The committee will also train athletes on ways to avoid mosquito bites.

There is no vaccine or cure for the Zika virus, which in most people causes only mild symptoms -- a rash, joint pain or fever.

The South Korean team is seeking at least 10 golds in Rio to take a top-10 spot in the overall medals table.

Source: AFP

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