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Malaria in Costa Rica (Zona Norte)

08 Dec 2021

Public health authorities in Costa Rica report (in Spanish) an ongoing outbreak of malaria in the Zona Norte region of the country, near the border with Nicaragua. Malaria is usually uncommon in this region but an increase in cases has been reported since September 2021.

During November 2021, there were 138 cases of malaria in the region affecting the communities of Medio Queso, San Gerardo, Cuatro Esquinas, Isla Chica, La Trocha, Las Delicias and Coquita.

Advice for Travellers

Malaria is a potentially serious infection that is transmitted to humans by mosquito bites.

If you travelling to this area you should:

  • understand your risk of malaria, given the current increase in cases
  • know how to protect yourself against mosquito bites during your trip
  • children, pregnant women, the elderly and those with certain medical conditions are at an increased risk of becoming severely unwell if they develop malaria and may be recommended to take tablets to prevent malaria (antimalarials) during your trip. You should talk to a travel health professional to find out if you should take antimalarial tablets.

If you develop a high temperature (fever) during your trip, or for up to a month on return, you should seek medical advice as soon as possible and tell the doctor about your recent travel history.

See the fitfortravel Malaria section for further information.