CDC Expands Malaria Chemoprophylaxis Recommendation in Costa Rica

April 19, 2023

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention expanded its malaria chemoprophylaxis recommendation for travelers to Costa Rica in response to an outbreak of Plasmodium falciparum malaria. Health officials detected the majority of cases between April 2-11 in the cantons of Pococí and Limón in Limón Province.

Previously, CDC only recommended malaria chemoprophylaxis for travelers to Alajuela Province near the border with Nicaragua. The agency now recommends malaria chemoprophylaxis for travelers visiting Alajuela and Limón Provinces.

Currently, the Food and Drug Administration’s recommendations for donor deferral in the December 2022 malaria guidance require a three-month deferral for “travel to a malarial-endemic area” by residents of a non-endemic country.

CDC defines a “malarial-endemic area” as “any area with malaria where the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends anti-malarial chemoprophylaxis in travelers in the CDC Health Information for International Travel (commonly known as The Yellow Book) at the time the donor is screened.”

Additional information about blood donation and malaria risk is available on the AABB website.