Chikungunya in Spain

25 June 2019

Article: 53/2503

Spanish public health authorities have confirmed three cases of chikungunya in Alicante. All three people are residents of Iceland and were diagnosed following their return home from Spain. A further possible case in a member of the same family who lives in Norway is being investigated. In southern Europe, chikungunya is transmitted by the Asian tiger mosquito Aedes albopictus.

No vaccine is available against chikungunya. Travellers should be aware that avoidance of mosquito bites is the only reliable means of prevention. Methods of bite avoidance include:

  • wearing long, loose, lightly coloured clothing to cover up the skin 
  • the use of insect repellent containing DEET (N,N-Diethyl-m-toluamide) applied to any exposed skin 
  • the use of permethrin, impregnated mosquito nets 
  • the use of air conditioning if available and/or mesh screening of windows and doors 
  • eradication of mosquito breeding sites around the home, e.g. open containers, old tyres or flower pots that may collect water

For further information on chikungunya fever, consult the Travax (for health professionals) and fitfortravel (for the general public) websites.

Sources: fitfortravel, 17 June 2019 and EuroWeekly News, 15 June 2019