What is Malaria?
Malaria is a serious infection found in tropical and subtropical areas that is caused by a blood parasite and passed by the bite of an infected Anopheles mosquito. This mosquito bites mostly at night and is attracted to dark clothing. Symptoms can include fever, chills, headache, fatigue and malaise. Death results in one to five per cent of cases. There is no vaccine available, therefore prevention consists of insect precautions and anti-malaria medications. Because there are several medication options, selection depends on where you are going, your underlying health, and personal preferences.
- Cover skin with long sleeve shirts and pants. Consider treating outer clothing with permethrin product.
- Wear light or medium-coloured clothing and avoid scented soaps and deodorants.
- Apply insect repellent that contains either 30% DEET or 20% Icaridin, to exposed skin and clothing.
- Sleep under a permethrin-impregnated bed net or in an enclosed air conditioned room.
- Nets should be used over cots, playpens and strollers to protect infants.
- Present to an emergency department if you are acutely ill with fever after travel.
- For health information 24 hours a day, call 811 for advice from Health Link.
- Inform your family doctor if you experience the symptoms above, up to 6 months after travel to a country with risk of malaria transmission.
- Contact us for a post-travel assessment at our Market Mall Executive Building location.