The Centers for Disease Control of Taiwan, R.O.C. has issued a level 2 alert that Thailand is now a risk area for infections with the ZIKA Virus.
Pregnant women are advised to postpone travel to effected countries and returning travelers are advised to use condoms during intercourse for a period of one month.
The Zika Virus has become a serious problem since it was first detected in South America 2015. Pregnant women who get infected bear the risk of their children developing serious birth defects. John wrote about the airlines who issued travel waivers for ZIKA effected areas (access here).
The Taiwanese CDC issued the alert after a Thai passengers was diagnosed with Zika at Taipei Airport and at least two cases have been detected in Thailand itself.
You can access the CDC website with the respective announcement here.
On February 14, 2016, the Taiwan Centers for Disease Control (Taiwan CDC) updated the Zika travel advisory, which became in line with the latest development of the ongoing outbreaks announced by the World Health Organization (WHO), the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC), and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (US CDC).
In view of the fact that WHO included Thailand as one of the countries and territories with autochthonous transmission of Zika virus for the first time on February 12, Taiwan CDC stepped up the travel notice level for Thailand to Level 2: Alert for Zika virus.
In addition, pregnant women and women planning their pregnancy are advised to postpone their trips to areas where Zika virus is active, travelers are advisedto avoid mosquito bites, and people returning from Zika-affected areas are advised to use condoms when having sex and people for at least 28 days to prevent Zika transmission.
Thailand also has a high rate of infections with Dengue Fever and a constant plague of mosquitos in the past few months. Should you travel to Thailand by all means get a proper mosquito repellent, close doors/windows at night and avoid travel in areas with lakes and swamps.
I’m expecting the list of effected countries to continue to grow and the temperature detection stations at airports, especially in Asia, to work under more stringent conditions again. These stations were introduced during the Bird Flu epidemic and are in operation ever since. Since birth defects of children are above and beyond any risk one should take it’s advisable to take these travel notices seriously.