Gustavo Pinto, an infectious disease physician from Brazil, will visit the Virginia Tech Carilion School of Medicine on Tuesday and give a public presentation about health care in Brazil. He will discuss the recent outbreak of the Zika virus in the region, as well HIV and hepatitis.

The presentation will be at the medical school, located at 2 Riverside Circle in Roanoke, Virginia, on Tuesday at 5:15 p.m. A brief reception will follow (for catering considerations, please email if you plan to attend the reception).

Gustavo Pinto
Gustavo Pinto

"Dr. Pinto is on the forefront of the fight and investigation into the Zika outbreak in Brazil,” said Thomas Kerkering, professor of medicine at the Virginia Tech Carilion School of Medicine and chief of infectious diseases and medical director of infection control at Carilion Clinic. “We are looking forward to learning from his first-hand experiences."

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has Brazil under a travel alert because of confirmed local mosquito transmission of the Zika virus in the country. According to the World Health Organization, Zika cases were confirmed in Brazil in February 2015, with an estimated 160,000 Brazilians becoming infected with the virus. About 1,600 Zika cases in Brazil have been linked to the birth defect microcephaly. The conditions there were under a heightened spotlight with the 2016 Summer Olympics taking place in Rio de Janeiro.

Pinto is from the Universidade do Sul de Santa Catarina in Florianópolis, Brazil, one of the seven sister cities of the Roanoke Valley. The Virginia Tech Carilion School of Medicine just began a partnership with the Brazilian university so medical students can opt for an international rotation there during their fourth year. Early next year, medical student Christopher Lee will be the first participant.

“This partnership has been a couple of years in the making and we are excited to welcome our first student participant next year,” said David Trinkle, associate dean for community and culture at the Virginia Tech Carilion School of Medicine. “In addition to Brazil, the Virginia Tech Carilion School of Medicine has five locations for international rotations through education program partnerships in France, Guatemala, India, Russia, and South Korea. Students have the opportunity to explore new cultures that present differences in health care delivery, health care teams, and availability of resources.”

Two of the other partnerships are also with Roanoke Valley Sister Cities: Wonju, South Korea, and Saint-Ló, France.

In addition to his public presentation, Pinto will meet with faculty and students at the Virginia Tech Carilion School of Medicine and Research institute, officials with the City of Roanoke, and health care professionals with Carilion Clinic.

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