Warm and wet weather create the perfect breeding environments for mosquitoes, increasing the likelihood of disease that can make you ill. Your best protection against mosquitoes and the viruses they can carry is to avoid mozzie bites.
Eligibility criteria for JE Vaccine
There is significant global demand for the JE vaccine. Victoria has a limited supply and therefore access is restricted to specific priority groups, targeted to those most at risk.
The eligibility criteria for JE vaccine has recently expanded to include people aged 2 months or older who meet eligibility criteria and live or routinely work in any of the following high-risk local government areas of Campaspe, Gannawarra, Greater Shepparton, Indigo, Loddon, Mildura, Moira, Swan Hill, Wodonga, Towong, Benalla, Wangaratta and Strathbogie, Greater Bendigo, Northern Grampians, Hindmarsh, Horsham, Buloke, Yarriambiack, West Wimmera.
Where can I access the JE Vaccine?
Several clinics in the Grampians region are offering JE vaccination.
Please contact the clinics directly to book.
Mosquito-Borne Diseases in Victoria
Japanese Encephalitis Virus
Japanese encephalitis is a rare but potentially serious infection of the brain caused by the Japanese encephalitis virus (JEV). It can be spread to humans through mosquito bites.
Japanese encephalitis virus was detected in Victoria for the first time in February 2022 in pigs, humans, and mosquitoes.
Ross River Virus
Ross River virus infection can cause fever, rash, joint inflammation and pain, fatigue and muscle aches.
Ross River virus infection is caused by an alphavirus, which is spread by mosquitoes. Symptoms usually begin to appear 3 to 9 (but up to 21) days after becoming infected.
There is no vaccine for Ross River virus, so preventing mosquito bites is important.
Murray Valley Encephalitis Virus
Murray Valley encephalitis (MVE) is a serious, but rare infection caused by Murray Valley encephalitis virus. Most people don’t have any symptoms, while others may develop a mild illness and make a full recovery. A small proportion of people infected develop encephalitis, which is an inflammation (swelling) of the brain tissue. This can lead to brain damage or death.
There is no vaccine for Murray Valley Encephalitis, so preventing mosquito bites is important.
Barmah Forest Virus
Barmah Forest virus infection can cause fever, a rash of variable appearance, joint inflammation and pain, muscle aches and fatigue.
Symptoms usually begin to appear between 7 to 10 (but up to 21) days after becoming infected, however many people infected with Barmah Forest virus will never develop any symptoms.
There is no vaccine for Barmah Forest Virus, so preventing mosquito bites is important.
Evidence is emerging that mosquitoes are involved in spreading the microbe responsible for Buruli Ulcer in Victoria (which occurs particularly around Melbourne, and on the Mornington and Bellarine peninsulars). Avoiding mosquitoes is the key to preventing mosquito-borne disease.
2023 - 2024 Department of Health Campaign
You can access a campaign toolkit to share with your communities here at the Better Health Channel.
Resource to teach children about the importance of not getting bitten by mosquitoes.
Grampians Region Japanese Encephalitis Vaccination
One-page resource with information for Grampians residents.
Advice from the Grampians Public Health Unit
Follow these simple steps to prevent mosquito bites
Cover up with long, loose-fitting clothing
Use mosquito repellents containing Picaridin or DEET on all exposed skin
Mosquito-proof your home with flyscreens on doors and windows
Make sure there is no stagnant water around your home
Avoid using do-it-yourself mosquito repellents
Learn more about mosquito-borne disease at the Better Health Channel
You can keep track of active indicators relating to mosquito-borne diseases using the Department of Health Mosquito surveillance report
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