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More clarity on SA's 1st Zika virus case expected next week

While authorities strongly believe a Colombian businessman had the virus confirmatory tests must be done.

Workers disinfect the famous Sambadrome in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, on 26 January 2016, ahead of the beginning of Rio’s Carnival parades, on 5 February, to fight against the mosquito ‘Aedes aegypti’, which spreads the Zika, Dengue and Chikunguna viruses. Picture: EPA/Marecelo Sayao.
Zika virus,Zika Vaccine,Zika virus in SA
Local

JOHANNESBURG – Health Minister Aaron Motsoaledi says while a Colombian businessman visiting South Africa is believed to have presented the country’s first case of the Zika virus, full confirmation will be received early next week. 

The man was diagnosed by a private pathology laboratory after he presented himself to doctors with a rash and fever. 

Motsoaledi says his blood samples have been delivered to the National Institute for Communicable Diseases (NICD), for further testing. 

WATCH: Inside the Zika virus

The patient, who is believed to have contracted the virus before entering South Africa, has fully recovered. 

Motsoaledi says while authorities strongly believe the man had the virus confirmatory tests must still be done.

“As you know, our institution, the NCID, has to do this confirmatory tests. They’ll do it over the weekend and immediately after the weekend, we’ll hear.”

Fact file on the Zika virus.

The Zika virus is the cause of much concern, with an increasing number of infections being reported in Brazil and in other parts of the Americas.

LISTEN: Explained: The origins of the Zika virus

Meanwhile, the department says the first case of the Zika virus in South Africa poses no risk to residents as the virus is not transmitted from human to human, but through a mosquito and or possibly from mother to the foetus in pregnant women.

(Edited by Tamsin Wort)


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