MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Senators Amy Klobuchar and Al Franken have announced funding for Zika virus detection and preparedness.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention awarded Minnesota $200,000 in funding to help establish, enhance and maintain systems to detect and track birth defects caused by the Zika virus.
Still, Sen. Franken says it is not enough.
“We have known this for months and months … and I think it’s almost criminal that … Congress hasn’t voted for the resources,” Franken said.
Senate Democrats blocked a $1.1 billion Republican funding package for Zika last month because it did not fully fund President Obama’s $1.9 billion request.
“You can’t predict these things, but when they happen you have to act,” Franken said.
Mosquito control investigators In Florida are spraying around a Miami neighborhood, trying to stop the Zika virus from spreading. Health officials believe at least 15 people were infected there.
Florida is now offering free Zika testing for pregnant women.
The National Institutes of Health says the first phase of a clinical trial in now underway for a possible Zika vaccine.