The Minister of Health, Hon. Saia Piukala this morning confirmed in the Legislative Assembly that Zika virus which is spread by mosquito is in Tonga.

Five reported cases have now been confirmed by the Health Ministry.

It is the first reported cases in Tonga.

According to the Minister of Health reports from New Zealand say three Tongans were tested positive of the Zika virus infection after returning from Nuku’alofa.

Hon. Saia Piukala says the public are advised to take Panadol, drink heaps of fluid and have a good rest should they are infected with the virus.

Zika virus is spread to people through mosquito bites.

Hon. Piukala urges the general public to clean their homes, especially the breeding grounds of mosquitoes.

The most common symptoms of Zika virus disease are fever, rash, joint pain and conjunctivitis (red eyes).

Hon. Piukala adds the illness is usually mild with symptoms lasting from several days to a week.

Meanwhile the Speaker of Parliament, Lord Tu’ivakano says although zika virus is not a life threatening disease, it is vital that people take heed of the MOH alert and take precautionary measures.

Zika virus was first reported in Africa and Asia in 1947.

The first confirmed Zika virus infection in Tahiti, New Caledonia, Cook Islands and Samoa Pacific was last year.

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