I recently caught “scrub typhus” here in Taiwan. I’ve never heard of this disease before. It’s caused by bitten by a mite - a bug about the size of a pinhead.
If untreated, the fatality rate for this disease is 60%! Even the 40% who survive are likely to be brain-damaged. Fortunately, there is a pretty good cure - tetracycline, an old antibiotic. I’m much better now. After a few days of treatment, the fever disappears, but you need to continue the drugs for two weeks thereafter.
Scrub typhus is endemic to Taiwan. It’s also found from Japan down to Australia and over to India. Your chances of getting it may be small, but certainly not impossible (after all, I got it). The hospital where I was treated sees about two cases a week. Projecting that all over Taiwan, I would guess there must be at least 1000 cases a year on this island, but I have no hard figures.
Since it takes a couple of weeks to incubate, you could catch the disease here and go to Europe or the USA and fall ill, and doctors there would never guess what it is since they never see it. So it might be wise to at least know the symptoms. The chief symptom is fever. The actual insect bite is a dead giveaway, but most people won’t relate the fever to the bite. After a few days of fever, mental confusion can begin, followed by encephalitis and death. Do a Google search on “scrub typhus” if you want to know more.
The mite lives in grass. I guess you never need to worry about it if you live in a concrete jungle and don’t visit any parks.