The dreaded Zika virus has finally made its way to Singapore.
A 48-year-old male who is a Permanent Resident of Singapore is the first reported Zika patient in the country, according to a joint announcement from the Ministry of Health and the National Environmental Agency.
The patient traveled to Sao Paulo, Brazil from March 27 to May 7, fell ill with a rash and fever on May 10, and was admitted to Mount Elizabeth Novena Hospital on May 12. He has been isolated.
The MOH said it is now screening the family members of the patient, who lived in Watten Estate. The area is not an active cluster, but the MOH advises residents of Watten Estate, Hillcrest Arcadia, The Arcadia and Watten Hill Condominium to monitor their health.
“The patient tested positive for Zika virus infection on May 13. He will be transferred to the Communicable Diseases Centre at Tan Tock Seng Hospital for treatment and isolation to minimise the chances of being bitten by mosquitoes and spreading the infection in the community. The patient is currently well and recovering. He will only be discharged upon being tested negative for the Zika virus.”
Zika has been most notoriously linked to microcephaly, which causes babies to be born with abnormally small brains and skulls.
Symptoms include slight fever, headache, conjunctivitis, aching joints, heat rash, muscular pain, and general discomfort.
According to the government statement, the NEA is upping its operations to control populations of Aedes mosquitos which carry the virus, in the area.