Emergencies

Zika situation report

22 September 2016

Zika virus, Microcephaly and Guillain-Barré syndrome

Key updates

  • Countries and territories reporting mosquito-borne Zika virus infections for the first time in the past week:
    • Saint Kitts and Nevis
  • Countries in the Western Pacific Region continue to report new cases as seen in Singapore, Philippines, Malaysia and Viet Nam. Thailand, in the South-East Asia Region, has also recently reported Zika cases. It is not clear whether the apparent recent increase in the number of reported Zika cases is due to an actual increase in incidence or whether this is the result of enhanced surveillance, testing or awareness.
  • The sequencing results from two Zika virus cases reported in Malaysia indicate that both are from the “Asian” lineage but are from slightly different strains. The first imported case is similar to the virus that was circulating in French Polynesia in 2013, i.e., a post-2007 “Asian” strain. The second locally acquired case is reported to be a similar to a previously circulating Southeast Asian strain of the “Asian” lineage.
  • Further sequencing analysis in Singapore indicates that in addition to the locally acquired cases which were caused by viruses from older strains of the “Asian” lineage, an imported case with travel history to Brazil was found to be caused by a virus similar to the strain of the “Asian” lineage currently circulating in the Americas.
  • Countries and territories reporting microcephaly and other central nervous system (CNS) malformations potentially associated with Zika virus infection for the first time in the past week:
    • Guatemala
  • Countries and territories reporting Guillain-Barré syndrome (GBS) cases associated with Zika virus infection for the first time in the past week:
    • Ecuador
  • The 2016 Summer Paralympic Games closed in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil on 18 September. WHO assesses the individual risk of Zika virus infection in travellers returning from the Paralympic Games as low, albeit not zero. To date, WHO has not received any official notification of Zika cases associated with this event. In accordance with WHO guidance, men and women returning should adopt safer sex practices or consider abstinence for at least 6 months upon return and apply insect repellent for at least 3 weeks upon return to reduce the risk of onward transmission.

This page links all WHO information to its response on the Public Health Emergency of International Concern.