A Socio-economic Impact Assessment of the Zika Virus in Latin America and the Caribbean: with a focus on Brazil, Colombia and Suriname

03 Apr 2017

The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), in partnership with the International Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC), produced this assessment to measure the socio-economic impacts of Zika on countries, families and communities, and to examine institutional responses. A focus of the assessment is the impact of Zika on the most marginalized and vulnerable women, in line with the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and our global commitment to ‘leave no one behind’. UNDP’s HIV, Health and Development Strategy, ‘Connecting the Dots’, recognizes reducing inequalities and social exclusion as central to health and development.

The report’s key message is simple: Zika is responsible for tangible losses to gross domestic product, estimated to range from US$7–18 billion over 2015–2017 alone, imposing an immediate burden on health care and social welfare systems, and, more long-term, could undermine decades of hard-earned health gains and social development progress. Larger investments in prevention, preparedness and response strategies at the local, national and regional levels would be cost-effective and help deliver on the Sustainable Development Goals.

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