Pristine beaches are a major tourist attraction. Image Credit: Lonely Planet

Dubai: The UAE Ministry of Health and Prevention has warned residents against travelling to the Republic of Madagascar after the reported outbreak of pneumonic plague in the African country.

The ministry and health authorities in Abu Dhabi and Dubai will issue circulars to all medical officers about the plague, including methods of diagnosis, prevention and isolation of patients, if any, as well as follow-up measures and care for the infected.

“Madagascar’s health authorities are checking all those departing from the country’s ports to ensure they are not carrying the diseases and all suspected cases are prevented from leaving and given all necessary medications,” Dr Fatima Al Attar, Deputy Chairman of the National Committee for International Health Regulations, Ministry of Health, told the state news agency Wam.

She also confirmed that there are no pneumonic plague cases in the UAE.

The ministry urges residents who want to continue their trip to Madagascar to report to the travel clinics affiliated with the ministry, to receive information and updates on proper vaccines and necessary medical instructions.

“There are not direct flights between the UAE and Madagascar, except for indirect trips run by local and international carriers via Kenya and Ethiopia,” said Dr Al Attar.

“The ministry has already prepared medical awareness leaflets that are being distributed aboard flights and trips coming from countries affected by the disease, including the suggested preventive measures that should be taken,” she said, adding that medications for the plague cases are provided for free.