Chikungunya in the Caribbean and South America
Updated: February 24, 2014
Travel Health Notice
Since December 2013, confirmed cases of chikungunya have been reported on many islands in the Caribbean. These cases mark the first time that locally acquired transmission of chikungunya has been detected in the region of the Americas. Local transmission of the virus has also been confirmed in French Guiana indicating spread to South America. Additional information about these chikungunya cases is available on the Pan American Health Organization’s website.
The Public Health Agency of Canada recommends that travellers protect themselves from mosquito bites when travelling to the Caribbean.
Chikungunya is a disease caused by the chikungunya virus which typically causes fever along with an arthritis-like pain in the joints and a rash. It is spread to humans through the bite of an infected mosquito. Although caused by a different virus, the symptoms of chikungunya can appear very similar to those of dengue fever.
Consult a health care provider or visit a travel health clinic at least six weeks before you travel.
- Protect yourself from mosquito bites, particularly during peak mosquito biting times around sunrise and sunset.
- If you develop symptoms similar to chikungunya when you are travelling or after you return, see a health care provider and tell them where you have been travelling or living.