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Zika fears rise in Indonesia as virus is confirmed in neighbouring Singapore

Indonesia is now screening travellers traveling from neighbouring Singapore, after the city reports its first pregnant woman diagnosed with the virus.

On Wednesday, Singapore announced that it had established 22 new cases of Zika Virus in a certain section of the city. These cases included a pregnant woman, who tested positive for the disease.

Zika Virus is transmitted by certain mosquitoes known as Aedes aegypti mosquitoes, to humans. When transmitted to the majority of people through a mosquito bite, the NHS describe the virus as a ‘very mild infection and isn’t harmful.’

Although no symptoms usually show once you have contracted the virus, if symptoms do show, they are usually minor and tend not to last too long. These symptoms can include:

  • - Fever
  • - Headaches
  • - Itchiness and rashes
  • - Lower back pain
  • - Muscle and joint pains
  • - Reddening of your eyes
  • - Pain behind your eyes

The CDC recommend that as there is no vaccination for the virus, travellers take mosquito bite prevention methods.

Pregnant women can be at a serious risk, as if it is transmitted to someone pregnant, the virus can cause major birth defects to the baby. These defects can include microcephaly, which causes babies to be born with unusually small heads.

As of Wednesday, Singapore had 155 cases of the disease.

A case of the disease was reported on Thursday by Malaysia’s Health Ministry. A 58-year-old woman who had traveled to Singapore became the country’s first case of Zika.

Mosquito elimination control activities have started in places where the woman stayed and visited on her trip. These include the elimination of mosquito breeding sites, and spraying fog.

  1. Subramaniam, Health Minister of Malaysia, said: “We can conclude that it is rather easy to get infected by the virus when visiting places that has outbreak, including Singapore.

“Proactive action from the community can help stop the spread of Zika virus in Malaysia.”

No reports have yet been made by Indonesia on local Zika infections, however, an Indonesian woman in Singapore is one of those infected.