World Health Organization

Thailand confirms Southeast Asia's first Zika-linked birth defects

Thailand confirms Southeast Asia's first Zika-linked birth defects

Authorities in Thailand have confirmed that two cases of babies with microcephaly, or abnormally small heads, were caused by the Zika virus, the first such cases found in Southeast Asia.

Dr. Prasert Thongcharoen, a senior Health Ministry official, said in a statement Friday that the linkage to Zika was confirmed by laboratory tests in two of three cases of babies afflicted with microcephaly. The results were inconclusive in the third case.

The World Health Organization urged countries in the region to take stronger measures to contain the virus. The U.N. agency said the cases are the first of Zika-associated microcephaly in Southeast Asia.

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