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Western equine encephalitis in Argentina

01 March 2024

The Panamerican Health Organization (PAHO) has reported 307 suspected cases of western equine encephalitis from across Argentina between 20 December 2023 and 23 February 2024.

Sixty-nine confirmed cases (including 7 deaths) have been reported from 6 provinces: Buenos Aires (41 cases), Santa Fe (16 cases), Entre Rios (5 cases), Cordoba (4 cases), Buenos Aires City (2 cases), and Santiago del Estero (1 case).

Western equine encephalitis is caused by the mosquito-borne western equine encephalomyelitis virus and occurs in North and South America. Most infections are asymptomatic but may cause fever, chills, malaise, and myalgia. Some cases will progress to encephalitis which may be fatal.

Advice for Travellers

Travellers to affected areas are potentially at risk of western equine encephalitis and should be aware of this infection.

Travellers developing a fever during or on return from travel are advised to seek medical attention as soon as possible.