Prague, Jan 27 (CTK) – There is practically no threat of getting infected with the Zika virus in the Czech Republic, Health Minister Svatopluk Nemecek told journalists yesterday about the infection that hit Latin America and the first cases of which have been registered in Europe.
“I want to assure the public that the risk of infection by this virus in the Czech Republic is practically zero,” Nemecek said.
He said the virus is transmitted by a mosquito, Aedes aegypti, that does not live in the Czech Republic.
Nemecek said infected people face no threat, only for pregnant women there is the problem of the virus stopping the development of the brain of the fetus.
He recommended that pregnant women do not travel to Latin America.
In mid-December, the Czech Foreign Ministry warned against the Zika virus outbreak in Brazil and Colombia. Its warning now concerns the whole region.
“We recommend that all Czech citizens and especially pregnant women protect themselves against being bitten by insects in the whole region of Latin America,” Irena Valentova, from the ministry’s press section, told CTK.
Valentova said the warning newly concerns countries such as Barbados, Haiti and Venezuela.
The first cases of the Zika virus have been reported from Denmark and Britain. The patients got infected in Latin America where hundreds of cases have been registered so far.
The Zika virus is similar to influenza, causing mild fever, headache and a rash, but there is no way to treat it.
The Czech National Institute of Public Health will receive tests to verify the possible infection.