Malaria Outbreak: Gauteng Province, South Africa

On October 16, 2017, CDC received official reports of six possibly locally transmitted cases of P. falciparum malaria in Gauteng Province, South Africa. A total of four cases were reported in Kilner Park in the city of Pretoria: two on September 9, 2017 and two on October 4, 2017. Two other cases were reported in early October in Kempton Park in the municipality of Ekurhuleni. Gauteng Province is non-endemic for malaria, but rare cases have been reported. Previously, two cases were reported mid-February 2017 in the Doornpoort neighborhood north of Pretoria.

The South African National Institute for Communicable Diseases and local public health authorities have responded by doing case investigations, enhancing surveillance, and implementing vector control measures. Healthcare providers have been educated on the symptoms, diagnosis, and treatment of malaria, and the public has been informed about the symptoms of malaria.

At this time, antimalarials to prevent malaria are not recommended for travel to Gauteng Province. However, malaria and other diseases are spread by mosquito bites; therefore, measures to prevent mosquito bites should be taken regardless of area of travel. These measures include using insect repellent when outdoors, staying in an air-conditioned or well-screened area, and sleeping under an insecticide-treated bed net.

See the CDC malaria website for additional health information about malaria including prevention of mosquito bites and drugs for malaria prevention. For general health information for travelers to all areas of the world, see the CDC Travelers’ Health website.

Page last reviewed: October 18, 2017