I will soon be arriving in Zambia to take up a 2-year contract. I will be spending most of my time in Lusaka with occasional forays to other provinces.
I am concerned about malaria. What are the risks of contracting malaria in Lusaka? Do all expats religiously take prophylaxis? I'm concerned about long term chemo-prophylaxis and the toxicity dangers. Is it possible to rely solely on bite prevention - i.e. deet, clothes, nets etc.
Any advice greatly appreciated!
Malaria is endemic in Zambia and is one of the most common diseases leading to death in the country. When it comes to malaria, prevention is definitely better than cure. Prophylaxis is recommended in most cases. It is true that malaria is less of a problem in the affluent residential areas of Lusaka. Bed netting, window screens and insect repellent should be used whether or not medication is being taken. My advice would be to at least take the preventative medicine before moving and for the first few months. You will be able to speak to locals and medics in Zambia one you're there. They may know the answers from personal experience. Have you spoken to your doctor about your concerns about long-term usage? A professional medical opinion would be best for these concerns.
Hope this helped. Rianca