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ABC-7 Xtra: Health authority talks about controlling the spread of disease among migrants in El Paso

EL PASO, Texas (KVIA) -- As the borderland prepares for the lifting of Title 42 on May 11, concerns are growing over the health of the migrants staying here in El Paso.

ABC-7 spoke to City/County Health Authority Dr. Hector Ocaranza about the issue. Dr. Ocaranza says the health care providers currently tending to the migrants check them for potential diseases like chicken pox, COVID-19, malaria, and measles. There have been some cases of chicken pox and COVID-19 among the migrants, according to Dr. Ocaranza.

Dr. Ocaranza tells ABC-7 that he is monitoring the situation, but there is no need for the public to be alarmed right now. "We have definitely gotten reports of chickenpox we have received reports on covid-19 and as such we might continue receiving reports of other conditions, but so far as measles... we haven't received any reports on that," Dr. Ocaranza told ABC-7 in an interview.

Ocaranza added that he believes fears of migrants carrying vaccine-preventable diseases are unfounded. He argues many Latin American countries have higher immunization rates than the United States.

Another problem, however, is that many of the migrants in the area around Sacred Heart Church in Segundo Barrio are thought to be undocumented. That means they were not given health clearance by immigration officials when they entered the country.

Article Topic Follows: On the Border

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Emma Hoggard

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