Regional Zika virus summary

On Dec 26, ProMED published a summary of news reports on Zika virus infections across both South and Central America for the last months of 2018 which included Brazil (10 Nov) 7544 cases, Bolivia (15/11) 482 cases and Mexico (19/11) 607 cases from 19 states. (Archive Number: 20181226.6223397). The January 2019 WHO Bulletin contains an article on Zika and the need for continuing vigilance - ‘Zika: the continuing threat’Read more  

Advice for travellers

Zika’s symptoms include a rash, pain in the joints, and the eye condition, conjunctivitis lasting 4-7 days. Long-term ill-effects are rare, although the joint pain may linger for weeks, even months. Like dengue and chikungunya, Zika is spread by Aedes mosquitoes which bite by day and are found in urban setting, including leafy gardens and outdoor restaurants – even in upmarket hotels and resorts. Transmission of Zika virus has also occurred during pregnancy, breastfeeding, sexually and also through blood or blood products. Travellers should take particular care to avoid being bitten just after sunrise and just before sunset, the main feeding time for Aedes mosquitoes. All travellers, but particularly pregnant women or those planning pregnancy, should seek medical advice before travel to Zika-affected areas. Read information on smartraveller (DFAT).

Before you travel, call Travelvax Australia’s telephone advisory service on 1300 360 164 (toll-free from landlines) for country-specific advice and information. You can also make an appointment at your nearest Travelvax clinic to obtain vaccinations, medication to prevent or treat illness, and accessories for your journey.