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Travellers should take precautionary measures against malaria: Haufiku

WINDHOEK, 17 MAR (NAMPA) - The Minister of Health and Social Services, Bernard Haufiku has cautioned travellers going to Rundu for the Independence celebrations to take precautionary measures to protect themselves against malaria.
The main celebration of Namibia’s 27th Independence will take place in Rundu, Kavango West Region on Tuesday under the theme ‘United we stand for the love of Namibia’.
Speaking to Nampa on Friday, Haufiku said people should take standard precautionary measures such as using mosquito repellent, staying indoors after sunset, sleeping under treated mosquito nets and wearing long-sleeve clothing in the evening.
He said the risk might be low since people will only be there for a few days, but people should take these measures to contain the epidemic.
“We don’t want more deaths due to malaria, so people should take these measures into consideration,” Haufiku said.
The minister also said people can obtain medicine to prevent malaria such as Proguanil from their doctors.
Proguanil is ideal for last-minute travellers as it can be taken one to two days before travelling to an area where malaria transmission occurs.
More than 6 000 cases of malaria have been reported in Namibia since the beginning of this year, with the Kavango and Zambezi regions having recorded the most.
Earlier this week, the ministry dispatched a team of health workers and volunteers to Kavango West and East, Ohangwena and Zambezi, which are affected by malaria and other suspected waterborne diseases.
Upon arrival, the teams tested 700 people in the regions and 41 cases of malaria were detected.

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