Malaria Risk in Namibia

With out of this world landscapes, Namibia is a magnet for travellers offering a diverse array of habitats and vegetation to immerse themselves in.

Beautiful and mysterious desert, pink-granite mountains and striking desert dunes contrast with wide open grasslands, giving Namibia some of the world’s best scenery.

Namibia is also one of the few countries where animals still roam freely mostly unrestricted by human influence, allowing for magical sightings of some of the most common and rarest wildlife species.

It’s important to be aware of the malaria risk in any country you’re travelling to, including Namibia, so the following information will give guidance on how to help protect against malaria.

The ABCD Approach

The prevention of malaria involves 4 key steps termed ABCD which need to be considered before travelling to any country where malaria could be present.

ABCD stands for:

Awareness – awareness of whether you’re at risk of getting malaria

Bite prevention – this involves following the advice listed below to avoid mosquito bites

Chemoprophylaxis – in some area, travellers are advised to take anti-malaria tablets to help prevent contracting malaria

Diagnosis –seek medical attention immediately if you have any concerns about potential symptoms, including up to a year after returning from travelling

Awareness of the Malaria risk in Namibia

It is important to be aware of the risk of malaria in Namibia before travelling there which can vary dependent on whereabouts you’re travelling to and the time of year. Make sure to check the Fit for Travel website here & the Travel Health Pro website here for the most up to date information on the malaria risk in Namibia before you travel.

Bite Prevention Advice

To help protect against mosquito bites in any country, including Namibia, you should:

  • Wear clothing that is long and loose to cover your arms and legs to prevent them from being accessible to mosquitoes
  • Hang mosquito nets around your bed and the door to your accommodation
  • Use an insect repellent of at least 20% DEET-based concentration and reapply as often as recommended (if you’re looking for a DEET-free product, a bottle of Malaway insect repellent is currently free with any purchase of Maloff Protect, while stocks last)
  • Switch on air conditioning and fans, and use screens to keep your room cool which is less attractive to mosquitoes

Preventing Malaria with Chemoprophylaxis

Anti-malarial tablets can also help to provide extra protection against malaria, but they are not suitable for everyone. Find out if they are required ahead of a trip to Namibia by undergoing a full travel health consultation or speaking to your local pharmacist.

Symptoms of Malaria and Diagnosis

You will need to know what symptoms to look out for so you can access advice and treatment as quickly as possible if you are concerned you may have malaria.

As per the NHS website, symptoms of malaria include:

  • A high temperature of 38°C or above
  • Feeling hot and shivery
  • Headaches
  • Vomiting
  • Muscle pains
  • Diarrhoea
  • Generally feeling unwell

You should seek medical advice immediately if you develop malaria symptoms. These can occur during or up to 12 months after visiting a country which has malaria.

If your GP or pharmacist has recommended anti-malarial tablets to protect you against malaria during a trip to Namibia, find out if an over the counter solution such as Maloff Protect (atovaquone and proguanil) is the right option for you here.