Zika Virus
City workers fumigate a street as part of preventive measures against the Zika virus vector, the Aedes aegypti mosquito, in Cucuta, Colombia, January 30, 2016. Reuters/Manuel Hernandez

A Queensland woman has tested positive to the zika virus after returning from Tonga this month. On Friday, the woman was confirmed as carrying the zika virus, the Mackay Hospital and Health Service (MHHS) reported. She is now doing well after being admitted to Townsville Hospital.

Zika, like dengue, is a mosquito-borne disease and spreads thorough the Aedes aegypti mosquito. Residents of Bowen in north Queensland have been warned of the zika spread. They have been urged to take precautionary steps and kill mosquitoes in and around their homes.

According to the ABC, the Public Health Unit is planning home visits to destroy breeding grounds of the deadly mosquitoes and spray inside the homes. It is working closely with Whitsunday Regional Council. Mosquito control teams are already spraying the Queensland town. The zika virus has been linked to birth defects in babies. It is believed to cause microcephaly.

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“Our key message to all Bowen residents is to immediately take steps to get rid of Aedes aegypti mosquitoes at home. Tip out or remove anything holding water in your yard,” said Townsville Public Health Unit director Steve Donohue.

Already a dozen cases have been reported in Queensland since the start of the year. MHHS has, however, assured that the risk of an outbreak is still low as the infected resident was home only for a few days. Moreover, zika cannot be transmitted person to person.

MHHS has urged residents to spray in dark hiding places and remove anything collecting water in the yard.

“On Saturday, and again today and tomorrow, mosquito control teams helped by Queensland Health and Whitsunday Council have been going house to house in parts of Bowen. But I think really what everybody in Bowen needs to do now is spray their house and kill mosquitoes,” said Donohue.