Will they be ready? Rio, next Olympic site, plagued by virus and pollution


Allisya Mullins

This years Olympics will be held in Rio, Brazil. There are currently numerous health concerns involving the Zika virus and pollution.

Has it been 4 years already? The Olympics are slowly approaching. This year the Olympics are scheduled to take place in the city of Rio de Janeiro in Brazil from Aug 5-21. With less than a year till the Olympic Games, Rio has entered the stage of preparation with a little hesitation.

As Rio prepares for their summer plans they have an unplanned visitor to keep in mind. Rio has recently been dealing with the Zika virus that has been continuing to spread.

NPR’s Lourdes Garcia-Navarro comments that “The IOC says it will send advice on how to deal with the Zika virus to all the national committees… There is concern that the virus – which is spreading rapidly in the region and is possibly linked to brain damage in infants – could effect both athletes and visitors.”

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Health officials believe that the Zika virus might be linked to rare birth defects. Brazil advises that pregnant women do not travel to Rio with the Zika virus still around.

With Rio suffering from deep budget cuts, severe water pollution, and the Zika virus, preparation for the Olympics continues.

The International Olympic Committee is working to reassure athletes that everything will be okay: “We remain confident that there will be a safe environment for successful and enjoyable Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro.”

NBC News interviewed Olympics organizers’ medical director Dr. Joao Grangerio and he says, “Athletes should come to the Olympic Games…they (athletes) are not at risk.”

As we reach the six month mark before the opening ceremony of the Olympics, Brazil continues their daily routine actions for Rio de Janeiro to diminish the number of misquotes by August. With preparations still in progress, this year’s Olympics games should be spectacular.