Malaria is a mosquito-borne disease caused by a parasite. People with malaria often experience fever, chills, and flu-like illness. Left untreated, they may develop severe complications and die. In 2017 an estimated 219 million cases of malaria occurred worldwide and 435,000 people died, mostly children in the African Region. About 2,000 cases of malaria are diagnosed in the United States each year. Almost all cases in the United States are imported by travelers and immigrants who were in countries where malaria transmission occurs.
- Malaria cases among travelers returning to the U.S. are the highest level they have ever been.
- Malaria is preventable by taking antimalarial medication if traveling to an area with malaria.
- Malaria is treatable if diagnosed in a timely manner.
- People born in countries with malaria now living in the U.S. can still get malaria when visiting countries with malaria.
- Symptoms of malaria can include fever, chills, headache, muscle aches, tiredness, nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea.
- Use malaria prevention medications for travel to areas with malaria.
- Use insect repellent.
- Wear protective clothing such as pants and long-sleeved shirts.
- Sleep under insecticide-treated bed nets, or in screened or air-conditioned accommodations.