About the virus
There is currently an ongoing outbreak of Zika virus infections in South and Central America and the Caribbean, and increasing evidence that infection in pregnancy may be associated with fetal microcephaly and other central nervous system abnormalities. Zika virus infection has also been linked with Guillain-Barre syndrome.
As a result the World Health Organisation has declared a global public health emergency, requiring a united response.
Symptomatic Zika virus infection is typically mild and short-lived in most individuals, but particular attention is required for travel-associated risks in women who are pregnant or who are planning a pregnancy.
Although the UK climate is too cold for the mosquito that carries the Zika virus to breed, and so it is unlikely to become a problem here, there is a risk is to people travelling to and from affected countries.