Malaria epidemic in Venezuela reaches historic proportions

This year, malaria cases nationwide have increased by 75% compared to last year, reaching almost 200,000 infected people in 17 jurisdictions. The number of infected people this year exceeds the historic levels reached last year. Approximately 1 out of every 5 cases is due to the severe form of malaria called falciparum. Epidemic levels of disease are reported in the states of Zulia, Bolivar, Amazonas, Sucre, Delta Amacuro, and Monagas. Vargas and Miranda are also reporting this disease. In the state of Aragua, some cases have been diagnosed in areas that have not had any infections in the past 20 years.

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Advice For Travellers

It is estimated that the actual number of infected people might be 30% greater than the official statistics due to underreporting. All travellers to any region where malaria transmission is occurring can reduce their risk of exposure by taking all necessary precautions to avoid mosquito bites. Anti-malaria medication is recommended.

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