National warning to Lyssavirus exposed

QUEENSLAND Health released a national warning on Wednesday to anyone who may been exposed to the deadly Lyssavirus while visiting The Bat House in Cape Tribulation.

Health Minister Lawrence Springborg said the department was told two weeks ago of two people who were potentially exposed to the deadly Australian Bat Lyssavirus, a rare but possibily fatal disease.

The Bat House, which was licenced, has since been told to shut down.

Mr Springborg warned anyone who had visited the Far North Queensland attraction, and was concerned, should contact 13 Health immediately.

"Once such a person has been identified, we offer them and treat them with a vaccine that will hopefully stop the Lyssavirus.

"As a precautionary principle, there is some risk across the country and internationally, people are informed."

Lyssavirus is understood to have similar traits to rabies, and although rare, has a long incubation period of up to 10 years.

The application of the treatment can help ensure the disease does not develop.

Mr Springborg said warnings will likely be sent both nationally and internationally to ensure anyone at risk is protected.

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