Malaria risk is low throughout the year in all areas including the Canal Zone and Panama City. Risk is highest in Darien, Guna Yala, Panam and San Blas Provinces.
No Risk - Cruises along the Panama canal will not necessitate anti-malarial medication. Adopt bite avoidance measures.
Please check HERE to see a malaria map of Panama on fitfortravel (a NHS website).
For more information and advice on how to prevent malaria, see our How To Avoid Insect & Mosquito Bites page.
Chikungunya virus infection in Caribbean islands and the Americas
This is a virus passed on by being bitten by infected mosquitos. The incubation period is typically 3–7 days and symptoms include acute onset of fever and joint pain. Other symptoms may include headache, conjunctivitis, nausea/vomiting, or rash. The symptoms usually go within 10 days but in some may last months especially the elderly and people with underlying health issues such as high blood pressure and diabetes.
As this is a virus, there is no medication to prevent or treat the disease and anti-malarial tablets such as Chloroquine will not have an effect on it.
Bite avoidance measures should be taken and followed firmly to reduce the likelihood of being bitten.
The affected mosquitoes tend to bite during the day so wear long sleeved clothing and trousers wherever possible and ensure that a strong insect repellent is used and reapplied regularly, especially after swimming.
You should also sleep under a mosquito net and if you are staying for a long time or are unsure of the hotel/hostel, it would be advisable to take a battery operated or plug in mosquito killer for your room to kill any lingering mosquitos.
Below is a table designed to show you what vaccines are mandatory, recommended or ones to consider when visiting Panama:
|Cholera||Hepatitis A||Hepatitis B||Japanese Encephalitis||Meningitis||Rabies|
|Tetanus||Tick Borne Encephalitis||Typhoid||Yellow Fever Vaccine|
Man = Mandatory
Con = Consider
Rec = Recommended
Req = Required if visiting from area with risk of transmission