People and parasites – World Malaria Day, 25 April

The female anopheles mosquito transmits malaria

The female anopheles mosquito transmits malaria

World Malaria Day is commemorated every on 25 April. It recognizes global efforts to control malaria globally.

South Africa is one of the countries affected by malaria, but only in the North East. Consult your doctor about malaria prevention before travelling to these parts (the whole of the Kruger National Park is regarded as a risk area). When I choose to visit these parts I elect to use non-medical means of ensuring that I am not bitten rather than medicate.

Malaria Risk Areas for Southern Africa.  Most of South Africa is regarded as 'safe'.

Malaria Risk Areas for Southern Africa. Most of South Africa is regarded as ‘safe’.

Here’s what I do to prevent being bitten:

* I wear protective clothing after dark if I am outside. Long pants, long-sleeved shirt, socks.
* It helps not to visit malaria areas in summer.
* I stay inside after I have undressed for the evening.
* I use a specially formulated insect repellent on my skin.
* I book a screened or air-conditioned room.
* Where screens or air-conditioning is not available, I use mosquito netting if it is available.
* I spray the room with flying-insect spray indoors around recreation and sleeping areas or * I use mosquito coils.

Note for 2014:  And this year I am breaking my own rules.  I am going to a malaria area, the Kruger National Park, in summer.  December.  In the northern Kruger.  I will be spending one night in the Sable Bird Hide on the river.  Mozzie country.  No screens, air-conditioning, sleeping in the hide open to the mozzies.  I will also be using malaria prophylaxis (doxycycline) which means I will need to start it two days before travelling and then to take it during the time I am there and for thirty days thereafter.  It is really cheap in comparison to, and has fewer side effects (one is photosensitivity) than, more modern drugs. Just a nuisance to take it for thirty days after I return.

 

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About moirads

Clergy person, theatre and music lover, avid reader, foodie. Basically, I write about what I do, where I go and things I love (or hate).
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