In May 2015 the first case of the Zika virus was confirmed in Brazil. The virus has continued to spread, with active transmission reported principally in South and Central American countries and United States Territories in the Caribbean. Cases have also been reported in Samoa, American Samoa, Tonga and Cape Verde and the virus may spread to other countries in time. A map showing the areas affected can be found on the CDC (Centres for Disease Control and Prevention) website.
Although only one in five that contract the virus will become ill, and the symptoms are usually mild, Members with vessels proceeding to the affected areas are advised to ensure their crews are alert to how the virus is transmitted, its symptoms and treatment. At present there are no restrictions on travel or trade.
Further details on the virus can be obtained from the following resources:
CDC – Zika Virus
World Health Organisation – Zika Virus
IMO – Zika Virus Disease
USCG Marine Safety Information Bulletin – Zika Virus Precautions – Update 2
Members requiring further guidance should contact the Loss Prevention department.