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Ross River Virus in Australia (Victoria)

03 Jan 2018

Media quoting the Vctoria Department of Health Linkreport that there were around 7000 cases of Ross river fever in Australia in 2017, roughly double the total from the previous year. The Bendigo area of Victoria saw an increase of 567% from 12 cases to 80 cases.

Most cases of Ross River virus in 2017 were recorded in the early part of the year following heavy rains.

Advice for Travellers

Ross River virus (RRV) is uncommon in travellers and causes symptoms that include rash, fever, joint and muscle pains.

The risk is greatest in those planning outdoor activities (particularly camping) in rural areas of Australia, Papua New Guinea and the South Pacific Islands.

  • Travellers should be aware of the presence of RRV at their travel destination and practice good¬†insect bite avoidance.
  • Warning notices in the media, during outbreaks and in high-risk areas, are given in Australia and should be heeded by travellers.

No vaccines are available and there is no specific treatment for either infection.