The UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) has raised an alarm over the increasing cases of dengue and malaria among people traveling abroad. In England, Wales, and Northern Ireland, cases have reached levels similar to those before the pandemic in 2019. 

The majority of these cases were found in travelers returning from Southern and South East Asia, mainly India, and a rise was also noted from Central America and the Caribbean. With 634 dengue cases last year, the situation mirrors the pre-COVID-19 era, emphasizing the need for travelers to take health precautions seriously.

Traveling Abroad Requires Caution as Mosquito Diseases, Measles Rise

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Health Alert for Those Traveling Abroad: Rise in Dengue and Malaria

The UKHSA has issued a warning for individuals planning on traveling abroad due to a significant rise in dengue and malaria cases, reaching numbers last observed in 2019. Travelers coming back from destinations like India, Central America, and the Caribbean are particularly at risk. In 2023, England reported 1,637 cases of these diseases, a figure close to the yearly average reported between 2010 and 2019.

Dengue, while typically not severe, can become serious in certain cases, presenting flu-like symptoms. As shared by the Independent, malaria is more severe, potentially leading to fatal outcomes if not treated, characterized by fever, headaches, and muscle pain. Importantly, both diseases cannot be transmitted from person to person but are spread by mosquitoes.

Dr. Dipti Patel, from the National Travel Health Network and Centre, urges travelers to prioritize their health and seek medical advice before and after traveling abroad. Simple preventive measures, such as using insect repellent, wearing clothes that cover the body, and using bed nets, can significantly reduce the risk of infection.

Additionally, the UKHSA encourages travelers to update their measles, mumps, and rubella (MMR) vaccinations, especially when traveling with children, to avoid worsening the measles outbreak in England. In light of the 730 measles cases reported since last October, this precaution is more critical than ever.

For those planning on traveling abroad, the advice is clear: take the necessary health precautions to protect against these mosquito-borne diseases, ensuring a safe and healthy trip.

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Measles Warning for Families Traveling Abroad

In the United States, health leaders are telling doctors about a big jump in measles cases worldwide. They are giving advice to families traveling abroad. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) wants babies as young as 6 months to get vaccinated before they travel to places with measles outbreaks.

According to CNN, countries like Austria, the Philippines, Romania, and the United Kingdom have seen more people getting sick with measles. These places are popular with American tourists. This warning is especially important now, as many people plan trips during the spring and summer.

In 36 states, not enough kids are vaccinated against measles. This means these areas don't have enough protection to stop the disease from spreading. The CDC says two doses of the measles vaccine work really well, stopping about 97% of infections.

Doctors say that people planning to go abroad should check their vaccine records. If they are not sure they are protected against measles, they should see a doctor at least six weeks before their trip. This is a change from the old advice of one month. The goal is to make sure everyone has enough time to get their shots.

The United States has eliminated measles, but people still get it when they travel to other countries. So far this year, the U.S. has reported as many measles cases as all of last year. The CDC is telling all travelers to make sure they are vaccinated before going abroad to stay safe from measles.

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