Plague in Madagascar
There have been more cases of plague than usual in Madagascar recently. Low risk always exists throughout most of the country including Antananarivo and Mahajanga but mainly in the central and northern highlands above 800 m. Transmission occurs throughout the year but the highest activity occurs from October to January. There are usually only about 300 cases per year but this year there have been more than 2,300 cases (including 207 deaths) since late August. Cases have been in numerous cities and districts mainly in Analamanga Region including Antananarivo and the city of Toamasina. The last confirmed case was reported on November 21. Public health measures have been increased and screening of departing travellers at airports started. Some countries are screening those arriving from Madagascar. Countries in the surrounding region have had help from WHO to be prepared for cases. The risk to travellers to Madagascar is very low but they should avoid contact with potentially infected rodents and their fleas as well as sick people especially those with a cough.