Aimee Lou Wood, who is a registered nurse at University of the Sunshine Coast, was killed after being bitten by a wood tick while on holiday with her family in Cordova, Queensland, on Friday night.
The 25-year-old had been visiting family and friends in the Cordova area of the Gold Coast, when she was bitten by the wood tick on the first day of her new job.
“It was quite scary, but it was just a tick, a bit of a buzzy little tick that was sticking to my body,” Ms Wood said.
“I think it bit me quite badly.”
She said she tried to run away but she was still bitten.
“When I ran out the door I thought I was going to die and I felt like my skin was coming off.
It’s like a hot iron.”
Ms Wood has been told to wear a face mask, and will be treated for what is believed to be an infection.
She was released from hospital on Saturday.
Ms Wood’s aunt, who also works at the hospital, said Ms Wood was a good person who loved her family and was always looking out for them.
“Aimee was always doing good for her family, always looking after them and caring for them,” she said.
Ms Lou Wood was one of the first people to be bitten by this tick, according to Dr Lisa Nell, who works with the Queensland Department of Health.
“There are around 1,000 cases of this species each year,” she told ABC Brisbane.
“We’re just in the middle of it and we’re just now finding out about it and it’s really worrying.”
Ms Nell said she was confident Ms Wood and her family were in good hands, but warned more people were at risk.
“What’s really concerning is that this species has been reported in some rural communities,” she added.
“If they’re bitten and not treated early, it can lead to serious complications.”