Daily Travel Health Update, October 5th 2014


Dengue Fever –  Guangdong, China

Dengue Fever sufferers in Guangdong, China, as of today, now total over 20,000, with no apparent relief in sight as the epidemic, 21 times more severe than that of 2013, continues to claim more victims.  It has been established that 1000 new cases of the virus are now being recorded every day.

Ebola – Dallas, Texas

Thomas Duncan, the patient diagnosed with Ebola in Dallas is said to be in critical condition today, as questions are raised throughout the country about the U.S.A.’s state of preparedness for handling further cases, and dealing with the containment and treatment of transit cases.

A second patient is being closely monitored, while another 80 persons who have come in contact with the patient, are also being watched for any signs of the disease.  The patient, who is from Liberia, travelled to the U.S., but had no symptoms until after his arrival. Further, a Washington, D.C. hospital is testing a patient suspected of having Ebola.

Ebola – West Africa

As the Ebola epidemic storms throughout Guinea, Liberia, and Sierra Leone, and has begun to take hold in Nigeria and Senegal, West African news bulletins report that there is wide-spread anger amongst the population.  A desperate shortage of medical staff, facilities, and beds, mixed with anxiety over how the crisis is being managed has understandably brought down a wave of general unease and frustration.

Funded by donations from the U.K. and U.S., new facilities are in the process of being built, but are some months away from coming on-line.  New vaccines being tested in both the U.K. and Canada are not yet ready for release, but could be available to patients by year’s end, depending on test results.

First recorded cases of this current epidemic go back to early March, in Guinea, and have, today, reached a staggering total of more than 7,000, with the number of deaths reaching over 3300.

It goes without saying that any travel to West Africa should be undertaken with caution, and meticulous attention to hygiene.  Whenever possible, avoid contact with any healthcare facility, or any infected person.  Should such contact be unavoidable, complete protective covering, including face mask, and gloves, should be worn at all times.  In such circumstances, it is essential that no sharp objects of any kind be touched or handled.

For any additional details on staying safe and healthy during travel, please contact one of our Travel Health Clinics in London for advice and assistance in preparing for overseas travel at this or any time.

Cholera – North Cameroon

There have been 5 deaths following an outbreak of Cholera in the city of Benikoara, north of the city of Cotonou in Cameroon where 57 cases of Cholera have been registered.  These cases are also complicated by symptoms of diarrhoea and dysentery.

This report was issued by the Health Ministry of Benin, where it appears that one case has been registered.  It is not yet clear whether Cholera has also spread to nearby Ghana, however it has been confirmed that there are also cases in Kivu, DRCongo.

We shall follow these developments closely and include a further report in tomorrow’s update.