14 new NZ Zika cases reported


Another 14 cases of Zika have been reported in the past week.

There have now been a total of 61 confirmed cases in New Zealand this year. All of them were infected overseas, most of them in Tonga and Samoa.

A further three probable cases are being investigated.

The mosquito-borne virus can cause a fever, rash, joint pain and conjunctivitis.

The Zika outbreak has been linked to a surge in cases of the birth defect microcephaly in Brazil, although it is yet to be scientifically proven.

On February 1, the World Health Organisation declared the outbreak to be a Public Health Emergency.

The Ministry of Health recommends that women who are pregnant or plan to become pregnant in the near term consider delaying travel to affected countries.

All travellers should take precautions to avoid mosquito bites.