Research undertaken at QUT directly links weather conditions ideal for mosquito breeding in Bali with a rise in imported dengue into Australia, brought back by infected tourists; so it is very good news that the Wolbachia-treated mosquitoes introduced into countries, including Australia, through the World Mosquito Program have been found to drastically cut dengue transmission in those areas.
Advice for travellers
While most of Australia’s dengue cases are contracted overseas, outbreaks have occurred in tropical and sub-tropical regions of North Queensland during summer months. Dengue fever is spread by daytime-feeding Aedes mosquitoes and travellers should apply an insect repellent containing an effective active ingredient, such as DEET, Picaridin, or oil of lemon eucalyptus/PMD to exposed skin during the day. In addition, cover up with long-sleeved tops, long pants, and shoes and socks around dawn and dusk, when the mosquitoes are most active.
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.