There are a few basic health matters that require care and attention. The following points are only recommended guidelines.
We strongly urge travellers to consult a doctor and to check with your health
department prior to departure for any changes in health regulations.
Both chloroquine resistant and normal strains of malaria are prevalent in
Africa. Malaria is transmitted by some female Anopheles mosquitoes which
are active in the early evening and throughout the night, usually when one
is sleeping or sitting around campfires in the evening.
Malaria prophylaxis recommendations for Africa travellers:
Expert opinion differs regarding the best approach to malaria prophylaxis.
It is important to bear in mind that malaria may be contracted despite chemoprophylaxis,
especially in areas where chloroquine resistance has been reported.
Please remember that the best insurance against contracting malaria is to
try to prevent oneself from being bitten so use mosquito repellents liberally.
Wear long-sleeved shirts and trousers/slacks in the evenings.
If staying in a bungalow/tent, spray with an insecticide to kill any mosquitoes
which may have flown into your room. Mosquito coils are also effective.
If you become ill on your return, while still on prophylaxis or even once
you have stopped, make sure that your doctor does everything necessary to
establish that your illness is not malaria. Malaria is not a serious problem
if people are sensible and take basic precautions. We do not use camps in
any densely populated areas, and this greatly reduces the risk of being
infected by malaria. We have had very, very few cases of guests contracting
malaria during the 16 years we have been operating.
There are different drugs effective against different strains of malaria.
Your personal physician can recommend which one is best for you. The drugs
are discussed in the following paragraphs:
1. MEFLOQUINE (Larium) is recommended by the CDC as the drug of choice for
travellers at risk of infection with chloroquine-resistant Plasmodium falciparum
(which has been confirmed in much of sub-Saharan Africa). Mefloquine is
highly effective against both chloroquine-resistant and Fansidar-resistant
infections. The CDC recommends the dose (250 mg for an adult) should be
taken weekly starting one week before travel. Prophylaxis should be continued
weekly during travel in malarious areas and for 4 weeks after a person leaves
such areas. There are side affects to taking Larium, which you should discuss
with your physician.
2. For travellers who are unable to take mefloquine, the CDC recommends
the drug Doxycycline as an alternative.
3. If you are unable to take either mefloquine or doxycycline, you may purchase
Chloroquine Phosphate based drug (several brands are available). In such
instances, travelers must be aware of the possibility of contracting the
chloroquine-resistant strain of malaria, which is prevalent in East and
Central Africa. The CDC recommends starting the dosage (300-mg base for
adults, 500-mg salt) two weeks before travel. Prophylaxis should be continued
weekly during travel in malarious areas and for six weeks after your return.
Chloroquine Phosphate should be taken along with Paludrine. Both can be
purchased in Africa. Paludrine is the preventative medication recommended
by the medical experts in Africa.
4. The newest drug to be introduced is Malarone. Be sure to mention this
to your doctor, as one should avoid Larium if possible due to its reported
5. A new homoeopathic anti-malarial called Demal200 has recently been released
for more information visit the following website: www.blueturtlegroup.com
It is very important that you drink plenty of water especially during the
warmer months. In South Africa, all tap water is potable while in Botswana,
water is generally safe to drink anywhere, even from rivers and lagoons
within the Okavango Delta. Namibian and Zimbabwean water from taps is also
safe. In Mozambique and Zambia, it is recommended that you only drink bottled
Bottled water is widely available throughout the region, and it is recommended
that one drink at least 2 to 3 litres of water per day to limit the effects
of dehydration. This excludes tea, coffee and alcoholic beverages, which
act as diuretics and can actually contribute to dehydration.