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Brazil, Venezuela report increase in malaria

In 2017, Brazil reported an increase in malaria. According to the Pan America Health Organization (PAHO), between January and November of 2017, there were 174,522 malaria cases reported in the Amazon region, representing an increase in comparison to the same period of 2016 when 117,832 malaria cases were reported.

Image/CDC

The states reporting the most cases were Amazonas, Pará, and Acre, while Tocantins and Pará states saw the largest increases at 223 and 150 percent, respectively.

In addition, an outbreak of P. vivax malaria in Wenceslau Guimarães in Bahia State, Brazil has been reported.

Bahia State is not a malaria-endemic area. However, in the town of Wenceslau Guimarães there were 21 locally transmitted cases reported January 16–22 among workers producing manioc flour. These cases have been associated with another case in the same town, imported from the malaria-endemic Pará State.

In Venezuela, there were 319,765 malaria cases reported between EW 1 and EW 42 of 2017 ; representing an increase in comparison to the accumulated reported cases in 2016 (240,613).

Of the cases reported in 2017, 77% were due to P. vivax, 17% due to P. falciparum, 6% due to mixed infections, and <1% due to P. malariae.

The number of malaria cases reported in 2017 was higher than the annual average recorded in the past 29 years (1988-2016).

The three states with the highest number of confirmed cases during 2017 were Bolívar (205,215), followed by Amazonas (52,471) and Sucre (45,622).

Ecuador, Mexico and Nicaragua also reported increases in malaria in the region last year.

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