PHNOM PENH (Xinhua), Feb. 4 — Cambodian health officials visited three sites in Phnom Penh on Thursday in order to catch mosquitoes and larvae for Zika virus tests.
Huy Rekol, director of the Health Ministry's National Center for Parasitology, Entomology and Malaria Control, said the caught mosquitoes and larvae would be used as samples to test for Zika virus.
"We will test them in order to make sure that whether they have carried Zika virus or not," he told reporters, adding that health officials in provinces would also conduct entomological tests on mosquitoes and larvae.
The move came after the World Health Organization declared the Zika virus as a Public Health Emergency of International Concern on Monday due to its links to thousands of birth defects in Brazil.
"At the present, there is no new reported case of Zika virus in Cambodia; however, we need to take precautious measures to prevent the transmission of the virus," Rekol said.
The Southeast Asian country found a Zika case in 2010. The patient had recovered and since then, no new case has been reported.
Symptoms of Zika, which is transmitted through Aedes species mosquitoes, usually include fever, headache, rash, red eyes, and joint pain, the Ministry of Health said in a statement last week.
Most of the patients will recover within two to seven days and the fatality rate is very low, the statement said.
However, if the virus is transmitted to pregnant women, it can lead to the death of babies in the wombs, or babies' heads are abnormally small, it said.