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Japanese Encephalitis and Other in India (Update 2)

13 September 2011

Cases of Japanese encephalitis have been reported from Gaya in Bihar state, northeastern India.

The infection is mainly affecting children, particularly the 11-12-years age group. As of 11 September 2011, 56 children have been admitted to hospital for treatment and 16 have died as a result of the illness.

This is an unverified media report and laboratory confirmation of Japanese encephalitis is awaited. Cases of acute encephalitis syndrome (AES) of unknown aetiology have also been reported from northeastern India recently.

Advice for Travellers

Japanese encephalitis vaccine is available for those considered to be at risk. Avoidance of mosquito bites by 'covering up', using insect repellent and impregnated bed nets is essential. Travellers should also maintaim a high standard of food, water and personal hygiene whilst in this area as AES may be caused by an enterovirus.