Miami – The authorities of Sarasota, on the southwest coast of Florida, reported the seventh case of malaria registered since last May in that area, which is on health alert.
The seven people affected received treatment and recovered from malaria, or paludism, a parasitic disease that is transmitted by the bite of a mosquito.
All cases of local malaria infection were identified in Sarasota, specifically in North Sarasota, and correspond to people who did not travel outside the country, channel 10 Tampa Bay said.RELATED
This is, therefore, the first time in twenty years that a local spread of malaria has been recorded in the United States.
County health officials have so far delivered more than 1,000 insect repellents to residents and some 45 mosquito nets to local homeless service organizations, the outlet added.
The Sarasota Department of Mosquito Control continues its efforts to eradicate “Anopheles” mosquitoes, the only ones that transmit malaria to humans.
“Our general message to the community continues to be prevention to avoid mosquito bites through the use of repellents, clothing that covers the body, and reducing outdoor exposure from dusk to dawn,” the Department recalled Tuesday. of Sarasota Health.
On June 27, the US health authorities issued a health notice after the confirmation in the last two months of five cases of local transmission of malaria, four in Florida and one in Texas.
Since then, three more cases have been identified in Florida, the latest officially confirmed today.
It is a disease common in Africa and India, but not in the United States, that is spread when a mosquito bites someone with malaria and the parasites in the blood infect the mosquitoes.
Ten days later, infected mosquitoes can bite another person and transmit this febrile illness.
Health authorities recalled that malaria is not transmitted from person to person, but protective measures (such as covering and draining standing water) must be taken to avoid being exposed to mosquito bites and possible infection.
“Residents in these affected areas should take precautions, such as wearing long-sleeved shirts and pants, applying insect repellent, and avoiding areas with high mosquito populations, especially during sunrise and sunset when mosquitoes are most active.” experts alert.
The largest outbreak in recent Florida history occurred in Palm Beach County (east coast) in 2003, when eight cases were recorded.
In 2012, 65 cases of imported malaria were reported in Florida, that is, associated with travel outside the country or immigration, the Florida Department of Health (DOH) indicates on its website.
Malaria is one of the biggest public health problems in the world. It infects an estimated 219 million people each year, with an estimated 660,000 deaths, mostly children in Africa, the DOH added.
Its symptoms include bone pain, vomiting, high fever, and body tremors.