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Hendra virus

Hendra virus is a sporadic disease of horses that can cause very serious illness in horses and humans.

The natural hosts of Hendra virus are flying foxes. Human infection results from close contact with infected horses and their blood, body fluids and tissues.

Hendra virus prevention requires stringent work health and safety and biosecurity measures. A registered vaccine is available to help prevent Hendra virus disease in horses. Vaccination of horses is the most effective way to help manage Hendra virus disease.

The following information and resources support veterinarians, horse businesses and owners and businesses that dispose of horse carcases to protect against and manage Hendra virus risks.

  • Contact Workplace Health and Safety Queensland on 1300 362 128 about protecting against and managing Hendra virus risks in the workplace.
  • Contact Biosecurity Queensland on 13 25 23 for information on Hendra virus and animal health or biosecurity.
  • Contact Queensland Health on 13HEALTH (13 43 25 84) for information about Hendra virus and human health. Seek advice from a general practitioner, local hospital emergency department or local public health unit if you have concerns about possible exposure to Hendra virus.
  • Contact Department of Environment and Science on 1300 130 372 for information on flying foxes, and horse carcase transport and disposal.