Lyssaviruses are a group of viruses that includes rabies and Australian bat lyssavirus (ABL).
ABL affects most bat species in Australia. Although infection of bats may be rare, every bat is Australia should be considered a potential risk for ABL infection to humans. Rabies is carried by a range of mammals in many overseas countries.
Both rabies and ABL are spread by bites and scratches. These diseases can be prevented by rapid and thorough cleaning of the wound and by post-exposure rabies vaccination.
There is no effective treatment once the symptoms of ABL or rabies commence; the illness is almost always fatal.
For further information please see the fact sheet or contact your local public health unit on 1300 066 055.