The virus, first identified in the United States in February, has spread quickly across the globe.
And now, more than a week after the first cases were reported in Brazil, the virus is threatening to turn the country’s reputation into an international embarrassment.
Here are some of the key facts about the spread of the Zika epidemic.
Brazil is the first country to report cases and deaths.
It was the first to report on Friday that more than 300 people have died, with the death toll expected to climb to more than 500.
But Brazil has already faced a crisis.
After two major disasters in 2016, the country has had to cut back on public services and its hospitals have been overwhelmed by patients, who have been forced to take on the burden of caring for the pandemic-caused flu.
“It’s very hard to explain the situation,” said Paulo Bove, a researcher at the National Centre for Scientific Research in Brazil.
“If you ask Brazilians, they don’t really know what is happening.
We are still not getting any answers.”
Brazil’s top health official, Dr. Julio Cortes, has acknowledged the situation is serious.
“The country is facing the biggest challenges,” he said in an interview with The Associated Press.
“We need to take all measures.”
Brazil’s health minister says it’s not a crisis, but the country is already facing the worst humanitarian crisis since World War II.
The country is struggling to deal with the growing number of cases, with about one-third of the population already being diagnosed with the virus.
Health officials estimate that there are at least 2,700 confirmed Zika infections, up from about 1,800 last week.
“I’m not talking about a crisis; I’m not saying it’s an emergency,” Health Minister Alexandre Pato said in a television interview on Friday.
“But we are in a situation that requires our attention and the attention of our entire country.”
The World Health Organization has been warning for months that the outbreak could reach the U.S. In an update on Thursday, the agency warned that more and more of the country could be infected by mid-March.
“A significant proportion of the people in Brazil are in direct contact with new cases of Zika,” the WHO said in its updated report.
The WHO said the current numbers of confirmed Zika cases are higher than the previous high of 8,000 cases reported in June.
“At the moment, Brazil is not the only country where the virus has spread,” WHO Assistant Director-General Dr. Peter Tuthill told reporters on Friday, “but it’s the most serious one.”
Brazil will likely have to cut its response time by up to two days, the WHO added.
The agency also said it expects that some areas could see up to 70 percent of cases from mid-February to mid-April.
The U.N. has warned Brazil to slow down, warning that the country should consider “all the precautions necessary to prevent further spread.”
Brazil is currently under the control of a coalition of political parties led by President Michel Temer, who has promised to put pressure on the government to take urgent measures to contain the spread.
He has said the country needs to do more to control the virus, but has been reluctant to provide any details.
The United States and other countries have also warned Brazil that it is in a “very dangerous situation.”
President Donald Trump has said that if he is reelected, he will immediately cancel visas for foreign nationals who have travelled to the country and impose a temporary travel ban.
“Brazil is going to be hit like hell,” he told reporters Thursday.
“What is happening is, I don’t want to put a number on it, but we are going to see a lot of casualties.”
Brazil has an estimated 1.2 million residents who have contracted the virus and more than 100,000 have tested positive.
More than 300,000 people have been infected and are currently under quarantine, according to health officials.
A recent government report estimated that about one in five people in the country have contracted Zika in their lifetime.
The majority of the infections have been in Brazil’s largest cities, but there are concerns about transmission from remote areas.
The government has not yet said how many people have tested negative, but estimates have varied widely.
The first cases of the virus were reported by the local media on Thursday and the health ministry has said it will soon be releasing an official list of confirmed cases.
It said the list will be available to anyone who wants to see it.
A government spokesman told the AP that more tests are expected this week.
The health ministry is trying to determine how many cases have been transmitted to other countries.
The Brazilian government is not disclosing the number of confirmed and suspected cases, but experts say there could be as many as 2 million infections, and that the virus could spread rapidly.
Health experts say the WHO’s estimates of how many infections Brazil has has already recorded are not accurate.
Some health experts