TIME  |  February 2, 2016

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On Monday, the World Health Organization declared Zika a global health emergency, the first time in history for a mosquito-borne disease. This is only the fourth global emergency declared for any disease: the others were Influenza (H1N1), polio and Ebola. Zika is an international threat because it has never been seen on this scale and has explosive pandemic potential. The mosquito that transmits the virus is found almost everywhere, and there is intense international travel. Zika is already in more than 20 countries. By the end of this year, Zika will likely come to the U.S., Europe, and worldwide—amplified by the Rio Olympics.

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