Warning for tourists. More and more often, they bring back a deadly disease from their holidays

Warning for tourists.  More and more often, they bring back a deadly disease from their holidays

The number of malaria cases exceeded two thousand for the first time in 22 years. The British organization appealed to travelers.

The British Health Safety Executive (UKHSA) recorded over 2,000 cases of malaria in tourists returning from exotic holidays in 2023. This is the highest number in 22 years. Experts warn travelers and urge them to vaccinate and take antimalarial drugs in particularly at-risk countries. Malaria can be infected by, among others: in some areas of Africa and Asia.

Over 2,000 cases of malaria

The UK has recorded a record number of malaria cases among tourists. For the first time since 2001, the number of cases detected in people returning from holidays exceeded two thousand. “2,004 cases were confirmed in England, Wales and Northern Ireland in people who had recently been abroad – an increase of 635 on the previous year,” it says. A dangerous disease caused by parasites, it can be transmitted to humans through mosquito bites. Symptoms include high fever, chills, headaches, diarrhea and weakness. In severe cases of malaria, the mortality rate is up to 20%. in adults. Death may occur even within several dozen hours of the initial symptoms of infection.

UKHSA appeals to tourists

The British organization appeals to tourists to familiarize themselves with the conditions in the country they are going to. Before traveling to a malaria-prone region, a treatment plan should be implemented, which may include the inclusion of WHO pre-qualified vaccines or taking antimalarial medications. Travelers to most parts of Africa, as well as South and Southeast Asia, northern South America, the Caribbean and some Pacific islands, especially Papua New Guinea, should be aware of the risk of malaria. “Simple steps such as using insect repellent, covering exposed skin, sleeping under mosquito nets and taking malaria prevention tablets can reduce the risk of infection,” says Professor Peter Chiodini, director of the Malaria Reference Laboratory at UKHSA.

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