NEWS > General
Posted by Shelley Tilbrook on 13/07/2022.

Positive Hendra Virus Case in Mackay, Queensland

The first case of Hendra virus in Queensland since 2017 has been detected after a horse in the Mackay area tested positive on Friday (8 July).

Biosecurity Queensland confirmed the state had their first case of Hendra virus since 2017, following a horse in the Mackay area testing positive on Friday.

Hendra virus is predominantly found in fruit bats but can be passed onto horses.

There have been cases in the past where horses can pass the infection on to humans, but this is a “small number”.

In people the first symptoms to develop are fever, cough, sore throat, headache and tiredness.

Meningitis or inflammation of the brain can also develop, which can cause convulsions and coma.

Dr Allison Crook, Biosecurity Queensland Chief Veterinary Officer, revealed a horse had been euthanised on the property after it became extremely ill.

“Tracing and risk assessments have been undertaken on other animals on the property,” Dr Crook said.

“We are working with the property and horse owners to ensure the risk is contained on the property.

Horse owners and Equestrian Australia members are reminded to be vigilant with good biosecurity and personal hygiene. The best defence against Hendra virus is vaccination.

“If a horse becomes sick, owners should contact their veterinarian immediately.

“People in contact with horses need to remember to continue to practise good biosecurity and personal hygiene measures even if a horse is vaccinated against Hendra virus.”

For more details on the situation, click here.


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