Queensland will boost measures to combat mosquito breeds responsible for the spread of Zika virus and Dengue fever.
Minister for Health and Ambulance Service Cameron Dick announced the measures following a specially convened roundtable of public health and infectious disease experts last week..
“Expert advice is that Zika virus is not currently circulating in Queensland,” Mr Dick said.
“We want to keep it that way.”
Mr Dick said the roundtable had agreed to two immediate measures to help boost Queensland’s response.
The State Government will spend $400,000 to increase the capacity of its laboratories – including one in Townsville – to rapidly test for Zika virus in humans.
This will be the first time that testing for the Zika virus in humans will occur in Townsville.
Queensland Health will also spend $1 million to develop a new campaign to educate people on the vital role they can play in reducing the spread of mosquitoes. The campaign would target both Dengue and Zika virus.
In addition, Queensland Health has advised of an immediate food recall of pre-packed lettuce products (including baby spinach, baby rocket, cos and kale) grown and distributed by the Victorian-based company Tripod Farmers.
The recall comes after an increased number of Salmonella anatum cases in Victoria.
At this stage, we have been advised that the recalled product was not distributed to Coles and Woolworths supermarkets in Queensland.
However, the products are distributed to some trade outlets in Queensland and a number of businesses are affected.
Queensland Health is liaising with companies who may have incorporated the recalled product into other foods sold to the public.