Maldives confirms first Zika case

Two locals have tested positive for Zika, Health Protection Agency (HPA) confirmed Friday making it the first positive cases for the mosquito born disease in the Maldives.

Maldives had recently intensified Zika screening and HPA in a statement said two locals had tested positive out of the 517 people screened for the virus following suspected symptoms.

Zika causes only mild symptoms in most, including fever, sore eyes and a rash.

But pregnant women with the mosquito-borne virus risk giving birth to babies with microcephaly — a deformation that leads to abnormally small brains and heads.

Three tourists had tested positive for the virus after they left the Maldives earlier this year.

According to HPA, the tourists each from a different country — Germany, Spain and Finland had tested positive for the virus after holidaying in the Maldives this year.

It was however, unclear that the tourists had contracted the mosquito-borne virus from the Maldives.

There is no cure or vaccine for the virus, which has infected more than 1.5 million people in nearly 70 countries since last year, according to WHO, with Brazil the hardest hit.

Maldives government has taken measures to protect the tourism dependent nation from the virus and had launched special programs throughout the archipelago to eliminate mosquito breeding grounds.