Ecuador is generally safe but it is wise to be on your guard against any potential health risks you might face. A number of medical issues have increased here, largely due to disorganization in the public sector and lack of funds to fight off certain diseases. For example, in the late 1990s, malaria became a severe threat due to decreased spraying because of financial constraints on local governments. Poor sanitation and food handling have also contributed to significant health risks in the country. Most children and adults in Ecuador, for example, carry worms or parasites in their bodies.