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Curtin University
Risk & Assurance

Pandemic Information

Infectious Diseases

New diseases can appear and spread suddenly. Read and subscribe to the Smartraveller travel advice for your destination before you depart to ensure you have the latest information.

Water-borne, food-borne, parasitic and other infectious diseases (including cholera, hepatitis, tuberculosis, typhoid and rabies) are common around the world, with serious outbreaks occuring from time to time.

Bear in mind that standards of food handling and preparation may be different in some countries from those in Australia. Illness caused by poor food handling is common in some locations, even in expensive hotels.

Beware of swimming in unchlorinated fresh water, such as lakes and streams, as this could expose you to parasitic diseases such as schistosomiasis (bilharziasis).

Please see the Smartraveller Infectious Diseases information page for more information at: http://smartraveller.gov.au/guide/all-travellers/health/Pages/infectious-diseases.aspx

Zika Virus (ZIKV)

Zika has been known to be in many countries of Africa and Asia for many years. The rate of transmission in these places is very low, with very occasional cases recognised.

In 2007, a large outbreak occurred in the Pacific island of Yap, which settled quickly. In 2014 and 2015 the virus appeared in other Pacific Islands where it had never been before, causing outbreaks. Since late 2015, the virus has spread to South and Central America causing large outbreaks in places it has never been before.

A list of affected countries, with ratings of ‘widespread’, ‘sporadic/limited’ or 'historical' transmission, can be found on the Australian Department of Health website. The list is updated regularly.

Please see the following information on the Smartraveller webpage for further information and travel advice: http://smartraveller.gov.au/bulletins/Pages/zika_virus.aspx.