Jamaica and Malaria

The Ministry of Health of Jamaica has confirmed 280 cases of malaria due to Plasmodium falciparum on the island between 6 November 2006 and 3 February 2007.

Of these reported cases, 264 have occurred in Kingston, 12 in St Catherine, 3 in St Thomas and 1 in Clarendon. There have been no reported deaths due to malaria.

The Ministry of Health is receiving technical cooperation from the WHO Regional Office for the Americas coordinated by the WHO Country Office and support from the Caribbean Epidemiology Centre to conduct intensified surveillance and to provide information to communities on adequate precautions to protect against mosquito bites. Vector control measures are also being implemented.

The outbreak in Jamaica is subsiding and an interruption in transmission is expected soon. However, the Ministry of Health plans to continue intense surveillance activities.

Jamaica is a non-endemic country for malaria. The occurrence of this outbreak highlights the importance of conducting surveillance in countries that are non-endemic to malaria.

WHO does not recommend any special restrictions to travel or trade to or from Jamaica.

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