Greece’s health ministry says blood donations have been suspended at hospitals in several parts of the country following a spike in cases of malaria, linked to a high number of migrants traveling through the country.
The measure took effect Monday after 65 cases of the mosquito-borne infectious disease were reported since the start of the year, most involving migrants. The ministry described the cases as being “sporadic” and not a cause for public concern.
More than a million migrants have traveled through Greece since the start of Europe’s refugee crisis in early 2015. Nearly 60,000 remain stranded following European border closures.
The Athens Medical Association argued the government had been unprepared for a potential malaria increase and called for the resignation of a senior health ministry official.