With the Zika virus declared a public health emergency by the World Health Organisation overnight, health authorities in Queensland remain mindful that the mosquito-borne virus could enter Australia via the Torres Strait.

Queensland Health Minister Cameron Dick says monitoring is under way in the remote northern region to enable the virus to be detected early, should it arrive.
He says the virus,linked to severe birth defects in Brazil is spreading quickly through the Americas and parts of southeast Asia,  is not currently a significant risk to although the situation will continue to be monitored.

Mr Dick says the Zika virus is carried by mosquitoes prevalent in tropical and sub-tropical environments and that meant Queensland, the Northern Territory and northern Western Australia are potential pathways for the disease.

There are currently no reported cases of the virus in Australia.