Venezuela has reported a 66.9 per cent increase in malaria cases recently, according to a informe21.com report (computer translated), with nearly one quarter of the cases being the serious strain, Plasmodium falciparum.
In the last week of March alone, 1677 new cases were recorded primarily in Bolivar and Amazonas States. In total, nearly 32,000 malaria cases have been reported.
The other 75% of malaria cases were identified as Plasmodium vivax, a milder form of the disease.
The report notes that there is a concentration of cases in Sifontes municipality, Bolivar State because of the so-called “gold fever”, where miners work in the open field, in inadequate labor camps, with no bednets or other protective measures that may impede anopheles mosquitoes from biting.
In addition, imported cases from Colombia, Brazil, and Guyana have been reported.
The mosquito-borne disease continues to sicken and kill far too many people each year, most of them children. In 2012, roughly 207 million cases of malaria occurred worldwide resulting in 627,000 deaths, according to the World Health Organization (WHO). In 2013, 97 countries had ongoing malaria transmission, placing 3.4 billion people at risk for the disease.