Killer disease via bats

HEALTH authorities are urging people not to approach or handle injured bats and flying foxes because of the risk of exposure to the potentially fatal lyssavirus.

NSW Health’s Manager of Enteric and Zoonotic Diseases, Keira Glasgow, says that while human infection is very rare, it could progress to a rabies-like illness which is almost always fatal.

“If someone is bitten or scratched by any type of bat they should thoroughly clean the wound for at least five minutes with soap and water immediately, apply an antiseptic such as Betadine and seek urgent medical advice.”

For assistance contact WIRES, 1300 094 737.