Since the chikungunya outbreak was first recognized in the American Samoa in late July, the case count has grown to more than 700 cases, according to a Radio New Zealand report today. This is the first report of locally transmitted chikungunya in Samoa.

Samoa mapEleven people have required hospitalization for their illness.

CDC recommends that travelers to American Samoa protect themselves from mosquito bites. Some travelers may be more likely to get chikungunya, have severe disease, or be at higher risk for other reasons. CDC advises travelers in high-risk groups ( arthritis, serious underlyingmedical conditions, elderly and long-term travelers) to discuss their travel plans with their health care provider.

There is currently no vaccine or medicine to prevent chikungunya. The only way to prevent chikungunya is to prevent mosquito bites. Preventing bites can be difficult, but it is important as you can get sick after just one bite.

Chikungunya virus is transmitted to people by mosquitoes. The most common symptoms of chikungunya virus infection are fever and joint pain. Other symptoms may include headache, muscle pain, joint swelling, or rash. For more infectious disease news and information, visit and “like” the Infectious Disease News Facebook page