Japanese encephalitis detected in North Burnett

Queenslanders are being urged to avoid being bitten by mosquitos to minimise the ris of contracting mosquito-borne illnesses like JEV. Picture: FILE

Wide Bay Public Health Unit is asking residents and travellers in the North Burnett to take extra care to avoid being bitten by mosquitoes, following the detection of Japanese encephalitis virus (JEV) in the region.

It’s important for all Queenslanders to take steps to avoid being bitten by mosquitoes, to minimise the risk of contracting mosquito-borne illnesses like JEV, and detections in the Mundubbera and Monto/Mulgildie areas are a reminder to all local residents and those travelling through the region.

You can minimise the chance of being bitten by mosquitoes by:

• regularly applying and reapplying insect repellent containing diethyl toluamide (DEET) or picaridin

• following all directions and precautions on mosquito repellent product labels, especially for infants

• wearing long, loose clothing (light-coloured clothes are best)

• using a plug-in insecticide vaporiser (indoors) or mosquito coils (outdoors) if appropriate

• using a mosquito net over beds (when there is no air conditioning or screens)

• ensuring insect screens on all doors and windows, especially in sleeping areas are intact so mosquitoes can’t enter your home or accommodation.

Around your properties, it’s also important to inspect for common mosquito breeding sites, clean up debris, empty and store any outdoor containers in a dry place, undertake frequent lawn mowing, use approved spray safely and ensure there is no stagnant water around your home. Common locations of stagnant water in the yard include pot plants, buckets, tarpaulins, trampolines or puddles at ground level.

Mosquito bites can be experienced at any time of day, but some species are most active at dusk and dawn.

There have been no confirmed human cases of JEV in the North Burnett region.