After years of delays, the Food and Drug Administration approved a test today for a fatal parasitic infection that is common in Latin America and increasingly prevalent in the United States blood supply.
The nation’s major blood banks said they would quickly adopt the test for Chagas disease, which in Latin America is usually transmitted by the bite of a parasite-carrying insect called the kissing bug, but can also be passed from mother to child or through blood transfusion or organ donation.
About 100,000 people in the United States are thought to be infected with Chagas. The American Red Cross estimated that in the Los Angeles area, the chance of getting a unit of potentially infected blood is 1 in 2,000, up from 1 in 10,000 estimated a decade ago.
Now, the simple fact is that uncontrolled immigration is the major reason that Los Angeles now has a higher prevalence of Chagas than it did—and that disease is likely be shared with the rest of the US. Now, the businesses and real estate owners that profited from illegal immigration won't be paying the hospital bills or lost wages of folks infected via a transfusion here. Why shouldn't they, though?