Japanese encephalitis increases during past five years in Assam, India

Due to changing weather patterns affecting mosquito activity, the annual number of reported cases has increased from 154 to
744, with deaths rising from 41 to 160 over the past 5 years. This infection is now reported from all districts. Before the season for transmission lasted from May to July, but now cases are reported as late as November since mosquitoes survive longer in warmer conditions.

Short-term travellers and those who restrict their visits to urban areas are generally at very low risk. Those at higher risk are travellers who visit or work in rural agricultural areas such as rice fields and marshland. Long-term travellers and expatriates are also at higher risk. All travellers can reduce their risk of exposure to Japanese encephalitis virus by taking all necessary precautions to avoid mosquito bites. Vaccination against Japanese encephalitis is recommended for people who may be at risk.

Visit our Health Library for more information on exposure to and the prevention of Japanese encephalitis.

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