New plague outbreak in Madagascar

At the end of 2016, the Ministry of Health in Madagascar reported a suspected plague outbreak in Befotaka district, Atsimo Atsinanana region in the south-eastern part of the country. The district is outside the area where plague usually occurs in Madagascar. No plague cases have been reported in this area since 1950.

By December 27th, there were 62 cases (6 confirmed, 5 probable, 51 suspected) including 26 deaths reported in two adjacent districts in two neighbouring regions of the country. Twenty-eight cases, including 10 deaths, occurred in Befotaka District in Atsimo-Atsinanana Region, and 34 cases including 16 deaths were reported from Iakora district in Ihorombe Region.

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

Advice For Travellers

The affected zone is located in a very remote and hard to reach and highly insecure area, While the risk of exposure for the general traveller is very low, the risk can be higher where outbreaks are occurring. Travellers can reduce the risk of exposure to plague by taking all necessary measures to avoid flea bites in areas where plague commonly occurs.

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