Information on prevention of malaria in Namibia

Very often we receive a requests and questions on malaria - where, when and how to protect yourself. We decided to publish this information from Ministry of Health and Social Services of Namibia as a short guideline for your reference.
Introduction
Malaria in Namibia is mainly found in the Northern areas of the country, although it has also been reported in the central region and occasionally in the South. Malaria can be serious and fatal decease without prompt treatment.
Malaria is transmitted by the bite of an infective mosquito, which usually bites after dark.
Tourists in Namibia can help to reduce the risk of malaria by using personal protection measures and prophylaxis.
Symptoms
Fever, rigors (shivering), headaches, backaches, diarrhoea and/or vomiting and malaise.
Personal protection measures
The following measures are effective in reducing the risk of mosquito bites:
* Sleeping under a mosquito bednet when mosquitoes are active at night, especially between 20:00 - 6:00 h. Nets treated with harmless insecticides will  further increase protection. Bednets are available in the local shops.
* If possible avoid outgoing between dusk and dawn, when mosquitoes commonly bite.
* Wearing long sleeved clothing and trousers. Dark colours attract mosquitoes.
* Burning coils and pellets containing the insect repellent pyrethrum.
* Applying mosquito repellents to exposed skin and clothing. Those containing diethyl toluamide (deet) or dimethyl phthalate are the best.
* Using insecticide sprays is effective if entry of mosquitoes into the room is prevented.
* Sleeping in rooms with  windows and doors screened with mosquito netting. Keep windows and doors closed.
Prophylaxis
The World Health Organisation's recommendation for travellers to Namibia and from non - malarious areas within Namibia is Chloroquine and Proguanil.
Chloroquine
Adults (including pregnant women) - 2 tablets weekly (300 mg base), beginning one week before start travelling, continuing once weekly while in the malarious area and for six weeks after leaving the malarious area.
Children: 5 mg/kg body weight taken at the same intervals as per adults.
Fully breastfed babies - half the recommended dose for children (2.5 mg /kg).
Partially breastfed babies (less than four feeds per day) - the full recommended dose for children.
Proguanil
Adults  (including pregnant women) -  tablets daily (200 mg base), beginning one day before travel, continuing daily while in the malarious area and for six weeks after leaving the malarious area.
Children: 3 mg/kg body weight taken at the same intervals as per adults.
Fully breastfed babies - half the recommended dose for children (1.5 mg /kg).
Partially breastfed babies (less than four feeds per day) - the full recom- mended dose for children.
Proguanil is to be used in addition to Chloroquine and not as an alternative.
It  is always advisable to consult your doctor before beginning of prophilaxis. Prophylaxis may not provide complete protection against malaria, particularly with the spread of chloroquine resistant Plasodium falciparum malaria.
If you follow these  precautions  the  risk will  be small and nothing else will spoil enjoyment of your trip.
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Termite hill on the territory of Epako Game lodge near Omaruru

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