US Athletes Worried About Zika Told to Skip Rio Olympics: Report | NBC New York
Zika Virus Outbreak

Zika Virus Outbreak

Coverage of the spread of the Zika virus in the Americas

US Athletes Worried About Zika Told to Skip Rio Olympics: Report



    Bloomberg via Getty Images
    Workers fumigate the Sambadrome ahead of Carnival celebrations in Rio de Janiero, Brazil, on Tuesday, Jan. 26, 2016.

    UPDATE: The United States Olympic Committee strongly denied that it has advised athletes and staff to consider skipping Rio, calling the earlier Reuters report "not accurate."

    The earlier report:

    The United States Olympic Committee told U.S. sports federations on a January conference call that athletes and staff worried about contracting the Zika virus should consider not going to the 2016 Rio Olympics in August, two people on the call told Reuters.

    Federations were told that no one should go to Brazil "if they don't feel comfortable going. Bottom line," said Donald Anthony, president and board chairman of USA Fencing.

    Anthony added that, "One of the things that they immediately said was, especially for women that may be pregnant or even thinking of getting pregnant, that whether you are scheduled to go to Rio or no, that you shouldn't go."

    Alan Ashley, chief of sport performance for the USOC, did not respond to email or phone calls requesting comment.

    The USOC has not officially issued its own set of recommendations for athletes and staff beyond what the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the World Health Organization have issued.