Women warned as Qld Zika case confirmed

A Cairns resident has tested positive for the Zika virus, taking the number of Queensland cases to 14.

A container of female Aedes aegypti mosquitoes.

A container of female Aedes aegypti mosquitoes who can carry the Zika virus. Source: AAP

Pregnant women are being warned to be vigilant to avoid mosquito bites after a 14th case of Zika virus was confirmed in Queensland.

A Cairns resident who became ill after returning from the Caribbean has tested positive for the mosquito-borne virus.

Control teams have been spraying a 200m radius around their Parramatta Park home in an attempt to get to the insects before they become infectious.

Tropical Public Health Services director Dr Richard Gair says the virus, which is spread by the same mosquito variety that carries Dengue, might not be able to be stopped forever.

"We have measures which we can take to respond to cases ... but it may not be possible to prevent transmission of Zika in the future in north Queensland," he said in Cairns on Thursday.

"The Aedes Aegypti mosquito (which carries the virus) lives in your house and bites silently."

Dr Gair said the disease, which has been linked to a condition characterised by babies being born with small heads, is usually mild.

But he says it's a concern for unborn children and pregnant women, who he says should use residual sprays in the home and insect repellent.

He says a Zika outbreak could be harder to deal with than incidents of Dengue because people were often unaware they'd contracted the virus.

The city's first case of locally acquired Dengue for the season was also reported in Parramatta Park on Wednesday.

Mosquitoes carrying the Wolbachia bacteria, which stops the spread of Dengue, have been released in parts of the suburb.

Dr Gair says this case occurred in a section without the special mosquitoes.

There haven't been any local transmissions of Zika in Australia.

Earlier this week a Bowen resident was diagnosed with Zika after returning from Tonga.

2 min read
Published 24 March 2016 at 3:54pm
Source: AAP