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HHS chief: US Zika cases rise to 450


By Sarah Ferris – 03/17/16 03:37 PM EDT

About 450 people in the United States have been infected with the Zika virus, the White House’s top health official told The Hill on Thursday.

The figure, which includes Puerto Rico and the continental U.S., shows an increase of about 90 cases from the department’s latest Zika report about one week ago. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is expected to release updated data later Thursday afternoon.

Health and Human Services Secretary (HHS) Sylvia Mathews Burwell has put her department into overdrive to halt the spread.

Recently, HHS has focused on outreach to the thousands of college students who will visit Zika-infected destinations on spring break. A total of 69 countries, most in Central or South America, have reported cases of Zika, according to the World Health Organization.

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