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Malaria in Venezuela

28 Apr 2015

The media has reported on a 66.9% increase in the number of malaria cases in Venezuela. Nationally, a total of 31 696 malaria cases have been reported.

During the week 29 Mar-4 Apr 2015, 1677 new cases were reported, the majority of which were located in the states of Bolivar and Amazonas. Seventeen were imported cases from Brazil, Colombia and Guyana.

The worst affected area is Sifontes municipality in Bolivar state where mine workers account for many of the cases. The miners work in the open air and live in poor camp conditions without bed nets or other bite avoidance measures.

The Ministry of Health reports that 76% of new malaria cases are due to the milder form (vivax) and 23.53% are due to the serious form (falciparum).

Advice for Travellers

The states of Bolivar and Amazonas are well recognised as high risk areas for falciparum malaria and antimalarial medication is recommended.

See the malaria section of the Venezuela country record for more detailed information and recommendations. Travellers should also take steps to avoid mosquito bites and report any fevers promptly.