Australia's authorities and health services are warning the public that an increase in mosquito carriers of deadly encephalitis is being recorded amid floods and hot weather.

Iran PressAsia: Australia's New South Wales Health Service has reported that mosquitoes carrying the potentially deadly Murray Valley encephalitis disease have been reported in the Darling River town of Menindee. The organization warns that this virus has no vaccine.

"Among those who get a severe infection, some may die or have lifelong neurological complications. There are no vaccinations or specific treatments for Murray Valley encephalitis, and the best way to avoid infection is to avoid being bitten. Avoiding mosquito bites will also protect against other mosquito-borne infections including Japanese encephalitis, Ross River Fever, and Barmah Forest virus."

The virus itself lives in the mosquito-bird-mosquito cycle and can only infect humans by contact with an infected animal. But the disease is not transmitted from person to person.

Authorities also reported a fivefold increase in the number of Ross River Fever and Barmah Forest mosquito vectors in the Mallee region, west of Adelaide. They likewise reported a fivefold increase in mosquitoes capable of carrying diseases such as Japanese encephalitis and Kunjin/West Nile Virus.

"We have an explosion in mosquito populations at the moment, so it is vital that South Australians protect themselves," said SA Chief Health Officer Nicola Spurrier.


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