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Travel health information for people travelling abroad from the UK

Leishmaniasis in Spain

19 Feb 2013

An increase in the number of cases of leishmaniasis has been noted over the last three years in the autonomous Community of Madrid in central Spain.

Since 2009, almost 500 cases of leishmaniasis have been recorded with a further 150 cases reported in 2012. These cases have occurred in southern municipalities of the region, including Fuenlabrada, Leganes, Getafe or Humanes, near the green zones of Bosquesur.

The outbreak is ongoing as there have been three cases recorded thus far in 2013.

Advice for Travellers

Leishmaniasis is endemic in southern Europe. Travellers should take steps to avoid sandfly bites by the use of repellents, clothing, nets etc. Sandflies fly low and bite mainly from dusk to dawn; particular care should be taken to protect ankles and legs when out of doors in the evening.