Creating a healthier, better connected Gippsland.

Health warning on mosquitoes and Ross River virus 21 November 2022

Status: Active

Date issued: 21 November 2022

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

Issued to: Health professionals and the Victorian community residing in or travelling to coastal or inland Victoria

Key messages

  • Victorians are being warned to protect themselves against mosquito-borne diseases such as Ross River virus and Barmah Forest virus this summer.
  • Recent flooding and heavy rainfall have increased mosquito breeding both inland and in coastal areas.
  • Mosquito numbers are already high and expected to increase.
  • Ross River virus is endemic to most areas across Victoria, particularly around inland waterways and coastal regions.
  • Symptoms of Ross River virus disease can include headache, fever, rash, joint pain and stiffness, muscle pain and fatigue.
  • Clinicians should consider the possibility of mosquito-borne diseases in patients presenting with a compatible illness, especially those who reside in or have travelled to rural or regional Victoria.
  • A blood test early in the illness can indicate potential acute infection and should be repeated two weeks later for confirmation.
  • The most effective way to reduce your risk of Ross River virus infection and other mosquito-borne diseases is by avoiding mosquito bites and removing mosquito breeding sites around your home.
  • Read the full advisory.

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