Archive for February, 2009

What price life?

February 2, 2009

In December 2008 The Independent reported that there were 15 cases of malaria in the UK in the previous 2 months following visits to The Gambia. In all these cases the tourists didn’t take antimalarial drugs. Perhaps they thought it was worth the risk? May be they didn’t realise it was necessary? Perhaps they had not heard that  Malaria kills over 1 million people a year with around 20 deaths in the UK after holidaying or visiting relatives abroad? Or may be they just didn’t want to pay for it and who can blame them. After searching for, and booking,  reasonably priced flights to Gambia  I turned my attention to the need for antimalarial drugs. You need a prescription to get them so I contacted the doctors and managed, with much sucking of teeth, to get an appointment two days before we go. The recommended drug (malarone) will cost in the region of £50 -£ 70 per person for 2 weeks. It is tempting not to bother particularly as there are very few mosquitoes around Sunbird House. But then it only takes one. Of course we will cover up in the evenings and use a DEET based repellent to prevent being bitten in the first place but we will also be taking the antimalarial drugs – its just not worth the risk!

In ten days we will be in sunny Gambia and able to post about progress. Hurrah.