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Health alert – Murray Valley encephalitis virus detected in Victoria 13 January 2023 (update)

Date issued: 13 January 2023 (update to alert issued 11 January 2023)

Issued by: Associate Professor Deborah Friedman, Deputy Chief Health Officer (Communicable Disease)

Issued to: Health professionals and Victorian community


On 13 January, further detections of Murray Valley encephalitis virus in mosquitoes at additional locations across northern Victoria have been reported to the Department of Health. These results indicate the risk of MVE is increasing in the mosquito population and indicates a current and active risk to people in these areas.

Key messages

  • Murray Valley encephalitis (MVE) virus has been detected in mosquitoes in northern Victoria this mosquito season.
  • MVE virus can cause a rare but potentially serious infection of the central nervous system and is spread to humans by infected mosquitoes.
  • Symptoms may include fever, headache, nausea, vomiting and muscle aches, although most infected people do not have symptoms. In serious cases, people can develop meningitis or encephalitis.
  • Anyone with symptoms should seek urgent medical care.
  • Clinicians should test for MVE virus and other mosquito-borne diseases in patients with a compatible illness.
  • Clinicians should notify the Department of Health immediately of suspected cases by calling 1300 651 160.
  • The risk of MVE virus infection and other mosquito-borne diseases is high this mosquito season. The best prevention is to protect against mosquito bites.

Read the full alert: Murray Valley encephalitis virus detected in Victoria.

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