Deaths due to Japanese encephalitis increase in Assam, India

Approximately 45 percent of deaths due to encephalitis (brain inflammation) are caused by Japanese encephalitis virus (78 deaths). About one-third of all encephalitis cases in surviving people are due to this virus. Authorities note that there may be more unreported infections and that more cases are expected.

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Advice For Travellers

Japanese encephalitis virus is relatively common in northeastern India and more cases can be expected over the remainder of the transmission season. Although the risk for the general traveller may be low, travellers to areas where this virus is circulating can reduce their risk of exposure by taking all necessary precautions to avoid mosquito bites. Vaccination against Japanese encephalitis is recommended, especially if visiting rural areas where rice is grown.