The Kruger National Park management would like to advise visitors to the Park about the risk of malaria and precautionary measures to be taken. Although there is some risk throughout the year, the annual high malaria season (September to May) has started, and above-average numbers of cases have been reported from areas surrounding the Park in the Limpopo and Mpumalanga provinces. This has resulted in concerns about a modest increase in the risk to Park staff and visitors.
These precautionary measures are the prevention of mosquito bites between dusk and dawn by using insect repellents containing DEET applied to exposed skin, wearing long sleeves and trousers, burning mosquito coils, using of fans and air-conditioning, and keeping window and door screens closed. The addition of prophylactic medication for visitors should be strongly considered, in consultation with healthcare practitioners.
There is very effective treatment for malaria, provided there is early diagnosis and commencement of treatment. Any traveller to, or resident of the Park who presents with fever and ‘flu-like illness must have an urgent blood test. Severe malaria can develop within a few days if not promptly diagnosed and treated.
The Park, together with the provincial malaria control programmes, takes active measures to reduce the malaria risks, by annual insecticide spraying of all buildings.
More malaria information can be found at www.santhnet.co.za, www.nicd.ac.za