Via The Straits Times: Singapore hit by first case of locally transmitted Zika virus infection. Excerpt:
In the first case of locally-transmitted Zika infection here, a 47-year-old Malaysian woman living in Aljunied Crescent tested positive for the virus on Saturday (Aug 27) at the Communicable Diseases Centre (CDC) at Tan Tock Seng Hospital.
The patient, who had not travelled to Zika-affected areas recently, had developed symptoms two days earlier and was referred to the CDC by a general practitioner the day after, the Ministry of Health (MOH) and National Environment Agency (NEA) said in a statement. She is hospitalised but is recovering.
This is not the first case of Zika here. In May this year, a 48-year-old permanent resident was thought to have caught the virus on a business trip to Sao Paulo in Brazil.
The two agencies said that importation of the virus from overseas is inevitable given the high volume of travel to and from Singapore, and that local transmission is also possible given the presence of the Aedes mosquito that spreads the virus.
Furthermore, as many of the people infected with Zika do not show symptoms, some transmission may already have taken place before the latest case of Zika was identified.
MOH is screening the patient's close contacts, including household members.
Health minister Gan Kim Yong said: "MOH and NEA are working together to carry out vector control and testing of residents in that area with fever and rashes so as to reduce the risk of further spread. I encourage those who are unwell and with these symptoms to visit their doctors for medical attention. We have also alerted our clinics in the area to look out for suspect cases and refer them to the CDC for testing."
MOH added that, as a precaution, all suspected Zika cases will be isolated pending blood test results.
At this point, three other suspect cases - two in a family who live in the area and an individual who works in the area - have preliminarily tested positive based on their urine samples. They are pending further confirmation tests.
MOH has also alerted all general practitioners around the patient's home and workplace to be extra vigilant and immediately report patients with symptoms associated with Zika.