First Zika cluster of 2017 detected at Simon Place: NEA

(PHOTO: Associated Press)

Two cases of locally transmitted Zika virus infection in Singapore have been confirmed at Simon Place, said the National Environment Agency (NEA) in a news release on Wednesday (29 March).

Both cases involved residents from the vicinity and were from the same household, said the agency, adding that the cluster was notified on Tuesday and vector control operations are being carried out in the area.

Singapore reported hundreds of locally transmitted Zika virus cases last year after the first such case was confirmed in August. In November, the World Health Organisation declared that Zika was no longer an international emergency.

As of Wednesday, the NEA said it had inspected 120 out of 400 premises in the Simon Place cluster to check for mosquito breeding, while also conducting ground checks in the area.

Indoor spraying of insecticides was done at the inspected premises, while thermal fogging and misting have also been carried out at the outdoor areas, said the agency. Ten breeding habitats – seven in homes and three in common areas and other premises – have also been destroyed.

The NEA  also urged area residents and stakeholders to stay vigilant and to continue eliminating mosquito-breeding habitats. Most people infected with the Zika virus do not develop symptoms, which heightens the risk of the virus’ resurgence as it may take some time before it is detected.

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