Health Alert – U.S. Embassy Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania (March 22, 2023)
Location: Kagera Region (Northwest Tanzania)
Event: On March 21, the Government of Tanzania declared an outbreak of Marburg virus disease with confirmed cases in the Kagera Region in northwest Tanzania. There have been no cases found outside the Kagera Region.
Marburg virus disease is a viral hemorrhagic fever. It is spread by contact with blood or body fluids of a person infected with Marburg virus. It is also spread by contact with contaminated objects (such as clothing, bedding, needles, and medical equipment) or by contact with animals, such as bats and nonhuman primates, who are infected with Marburg virus.
Symptoms include fever, chills, headache, muscle pain, rash, sore throat, diarrhea, vomiting, stomach pain, chest pain, and unexplained bleeding or bruising.
The government of Tanzania is tracking contacts of infected cases and those affected could be quarantined. Travelers to and from the region may be subject to enhanced health screening.
Actions to Take:
- Visit the CDC Travel Notice on Marburg in Tanzania, which has information on the outbreak.
- Avoid contact with sick people who have symptomssuch as fever, muscle pain, and rash.
- Avoid contact with blood and other body fluids.
- Avoid contact with fruit batsand the caves and mines where they live.
- Avoid contact with non-human primates(e.g., chimpanzees, gorillas).
- Travelers should separate themselves from others (isolate) and seek medical care immediatelyif they develop fever, chills, muscle pain, rash, sore throat, diarrhea, weakness, vomiting, stomach pain, or unexplained bleeding or bruising during or after travel (up to 21 days). Travelers should call ahead before going to a healthcare facility and tell the doctor that they’ve been to an area with Marburg virus.
- Continue to take malaria prophylaxis as recommended, as the symptoms of malaria can mimic symptoms of Marburg, leading to preventable health scares.
- Visit the CDC Marburg page for more information.
- Visit the CDC Travelers’ Health Page for Tanzania.
- Check with your medical evacuation insurance on options should you fall ill while in Tanzania.