Zika down in Brazil, but caution still advised

Australian Medical Association/AusMed

The Brazilian Government has declared an end to the state of emergency over the Zika virus, but other nations are still urging travellers to the massive South American country to be cautious.

UK health authorities still warn of a “high risk of Zika virus transmission” and the World Health Organisation still classifies Brazil as an “Area with new introduction or re-introduction with ongoing transmission” of the virus.

There is no vaccination or medication to prevent the mosquito-borne disease, which has symptoms similar to dengue fever and causes aching joints and headaches. It is rarely life-threatening and only one in four people infected actually develop symptoms.

latest studies also suggest that people who have previously contracted dengue fever might be less likely to be infected by Zika.

It is most threatening to pregnant women, whose foetuses can be severely affect by the virus.

The Brazilian outbreak began in 2015, causing the Government to implement a mosquito eradication program. It claims huge success from the campaign and says the number of Zika virus cases is now down by 95 per cent from the number in 2016.

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