US Embassy Warden Message on Dengue Outbreak

WARDEN MESSAGE - U.S. EMBASSY LA PAZ, BOLIVIA - April 12, 2011. This warden message informs U.S. citizens traveling to and residing in Bolivia of a dengue outbreak in the lower-lying regions of the country. Bolivian Ministry of Health officials have reported that an outbreak of dengue in the departments of Santa Cruz and Beni has claimed the lives of 23 people and affected at least 4,000 others. The Embassy is aware of at least two U.S. citizens who have contracted the disease.

Dengue is caused by any one of four related viruses transmitted by mosquitoes. According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), the primary symptoms of dengue are:

* High fever and at least two of the following:
o Severe headache
o Severe eye pain (behind eyes)
o Joint pain
o Muscle and/or bone pain
o Rash
o Mild bleeding manifestation (e.g., nose or gum bleed, or easy bruising)
o Low white cell count

The CDC recommends that a person go immediately to an emergency room or the closest health care provider if any of the following warning signs appear:

· Severe abdominal pain or persistent vomiting

· Red spots or patches on the skin

· Bleeding from nose or gums

· Vomiting blood

· Black, tarry stools (feces, excrement)

· Drowsiness or irritability

· Pale, cold, or clammy skin

· Difficulty breathing

We urge you to take all preventative measures to reduce your risk of contracting this mosquito-borne disease. If you reside in one of the affected regions, we suggest you wear insect repellent while indoors or out and eliminate any standing water in and around your home where mosquitoes could lay their eggs. In addition, make sure window and door screens are secure and without holes or use air conditioning. When possible, you should also wear long sleeves and pants for additional protection.

The U.S. Embassy encourages you to register and update your contact information at the U.S. Embassy in La Paz and/or the U.S. consular agencies in Cochabamba and Santa Cruz, Bolivia. Registration may be done online and can be done in advance of travel. Information on registering may be found at the Department of State's Consular Affairs website:

For the latest security information, you should regularly monitor the Department's internet website at where the current worldwide caution, travel warnings and travel alerts can be found. Additional information is available in the country specific information for Bolivia at and on the embassy web page at

Current information on travel and security in Bolivia may be obtained from the Department of State by calling 1-888-407-4747 within the United States, or, from overseas, 1-202-501-4444. These numbers are available from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Eastern Time, Monday through Friday (except U.S. federal holidays). U.S. citizens traveling or residing overseas are encouraged to register with the appropriate U.S. embassy or consulate on the State Department's travel registration web site at

You may contact the consular section of the U.S. Embassy in La Paz, Bolivia, via e-mail at or by telephone at (591-2) 216-8246 during business hours (Monday to Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.) or (591) 715-33713 after hours and on weekends. The consular section is located in the U.S. Embassy at 2780 Arce Avenue in La Paz, Bolivia, and is open to the public Monday through Thursday from 08:00 to 12:30, and Thursdays from 14:00 to 16:00. The Santa Cruz consular agency can be reached by telephone at (591-3) 351-3477. The Cochabamba consular agency is temporarily closed.

We hope this information is useful to you. If we may provide further assistance, please do not hesitate to contact us.

American Citizen Services Unit
U.S. Embassy La Paz, Bolivia
American Citizens Services
Consular Section

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