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Dublin: 13 °C Wednesday 26 October, 2016

HSE confirms two cases of the Zika virus in Ireland

Neither case is at risk of pregnancy.


THE HSE HAS confirmed that two adults in Ireland have been infected with the Zika virus.

In a statement released tonight, the organisation said that it was informed today of two unrelated cases of the virus, making them the first confirmed cases in Ireland.

Zika, a mosquito-borne virus, has swept through countries in South and Central America recently.

Although rarely fatal, there has been an exponential rise in cases of a rare birth defect in Brazil thought to be linked to the virus. Microcephaly involves babies being born with smaller than normal heads and brains.

Both people in Ireland had travelled to a Zika-affected country and neither is at risk of pregnancy, the HSE said.

Both adults are said to be fully recovered from the virus.

The HSE said tonight that the finding of a Zika case in Ireland was not “an unexpected event.”

The finding of Zika cases in Ireland is not an unexpected event as many other European countries have reported cases as a result of travel to affected areas.


Zika, a mosquito-borne virus, has swept through countries in South and Central America recently.

The World Health Organisation declared the spread of the virus a worldwide public health emergency yesterday, with estimates that there could be up to four million cases of Zika in the Americas in the next year.

Pregnant women are being advised to avoid travelling to affected countries and the Department of Foreign Affairs has issued a travel advisory for the areas.

The news of cases in Ireland comes as health officials in the US confirmed today that a patient in Texas has acquired the Zika virus through sexual transmission.

Dallas County Health and Human Services said that it received confirmation from the US Centres for Disease Control and Prevention. The patient was infected after having sexual contact with an ill person who returned from a country where Zika was present.

The HSE are advising anyone who feels ill after travelling back from an affected country to contact their doctor immediately and let them know of their recent travel history.

- With reporting from AP

Read: WHO declares Zika virus an international emergency

Read: Zika virus spreading into Europe as Danish national tests positive

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