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Diseases potentially acquired by travel to Southern Africa

David Murdoch, MD, MSc, DTM&H, FRACP, FRCPA, FFSc(RCPA)
Section Editor
Karin Leder, MBBS, FRACP, PhD, MPH, DTMH
Deputy Editor
Elinor L Baron, MD, DTMH


Southern Africa is comprised of Botswana, Lesotho, Namibia, St. Helena, South Africa, Swaziland, and Zimbabwe. This region encompasses deserts to fertile plateaus and plains.


Malaria — Malaria is a risk in some areas of Southern Africa. In malarious areas, Plasmodium falciparum is the predominant cause of malaria, and chloroquine resistance is widespread. Country-specific risk areas are listed below [1]:

Botswana – Risk exists from November to May/June in the northern parts of the country: Bobirwa, Boteti, Chobe, Ngamiland, Okavango, and Tutume districts/sub-districts.

Lesotho – No risk.

Namibia – Risk exists from November to June in Oshana, Oshikoto, Omusati, Omaheke, Ohangwena, and Otjozondjupa. Risk throughout the year exists along the Kunene River and in the Kavango and Caprivi regions.


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Literature review current through: Mar 2017. | This topic last updated: Jun 30, 2016.
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