RECOMMENDED VACCINES WHEN YOU TRAVEL TO AFRICA

RECOMMENDED VACCINES WHEN YOU TRAVEL TO AFRICA

Recommended Vaccines When You Travel to Africa

1) Hepatitis A 

Risk increases with duration of travel and is highest for those who live in or visit rural settings, trek in back-country areas, or frequently eat or drink in areas with poor sanitation.

2) Meningococcal Disease

Risk is increased for travellers to sub-Saharan Africa (the ‘meningitis belt’) during the dry season, especially if there is prolonged contact with locals.

3) Typhoid Fever

Risk is higher where environmental sanitation and personal hygiene may be poor. The adventurous eater venturing “off the beaten track” should also consider vaccination.

4) Rabies

Should be considered in most parts of the world if exposure to animals is expected. Travellers spending time outdoors, especially rural areas, and who are involved in outdoor activities (eg cycling, camping, hiking outdoor work, caving) are at particular risk. Children are also considered higher risk because they tend to play with animals and may not report bites.

5) Yellow Fever

Recommendations may vary by country.

Proof of vaccination (International Certificate of Vaccination) against yellow fever may be required or travel to and from some of the countries in South America and Trinidad and Tobago.

Some countries with endemic yellow fever may waive requirements for travellers coming from non-infected areas and staying less than 2 weeks. Vaccination is recommended for travel in countries that lie in yellow fever endemic zones but do not officially report the disease.

Note: This is a guide only. Advice by your healthcare professional will vary depending on destination, duration of travel, types of accommodation and what types of activities you take part in.

References:

1. Marshall GM. The Vaccine Handbook: A practical guide for clinicians, 4th edition. 2012.

2. Travel Clinics of America. Destinations 

3. World Health Organization. International Travel and Health 2014.

4. Kita Y, et al. Replacement of oral polio vaccine with inactivated polio vaccine and inclusion of Haemophilus influenzae type b vaccine in the national childhood immunization schedule. Epidemiological News Bulletin 2013; 39(2): 27-33

Download Teleme’s mobile app and consult a Vaccination Practitioner

 Dr. Suraya

Dr. Suraya

Vaccination Practitioner (Adult)

RECOMMENDED VACCINES WHEN YOU TRAVEL TO AUSTRALASIA & PACIFIC REGION

RECOMMENDED VACCINES WHEN YOU TRAVEL TO AUSTRALASIA & PACIFIC REGION

Recommended Vaccines When You Travel to Australasia & Pacific Region

1) Hepatitis A (except Australia and New Zealand)

Risk increases with duration of travel and is highest for those who live in or visit rural settings, trek in back-country areas, or frequently eat or drink in areas with poor sanitation.

2) Typhoid Fever

Risk is higher where environmental sanitation and personal hygiene may be poor. The adventurous eater venturing “off the beaten track” should also consider vaccination.

3) Japanese Encephalitis (Torres Strait, far Northern Australia and Papau New Guinea only)

Risk for short-term travellers and for those staying in urban centres is very low. Risk increases with prolonged visits to rural settings, and outdoor, evening and night-time activities (eg cycling, camping, working outdoors, sleeping in unscreened structures).

4) Rabies

Should be considered in most parts of the world if exposure to animals is expected. Travellers spending time outdoors, especially rural areas, and who are involved in outdoor activities (eg cycling, camping, hiking outdoor work, caving) are at particular risk. Children are also considered higher risk because they tend to play with animals and may not report bites.

Note: This is a guide only. Advice by your healthcare professional will vary depending on destination, duration of travel, types of accommodation and what types of activities you take part in.

References:

1. Marshall GM. The Vaccine Handbook: A practical guide for clinicians, 4th edition. 2012.

2. Travel Clinics of America. Destinations 

3. World Health Organization. International Travel and Health 2014.

4. Kita Y, et al. Replacement of oral polio vaccine with inactivated polio vaccine and inclusion of Haemophilus influenzae type b vaccine in the national childhood immunization schedule. Epidemiological News Bulletin 2013; 39(2): 27-33

Download Teleme’s mobile app and consult a Vaccination Practitioner

 

 Dr. Suraya

Dr. Suraya

Vaccination Practitioner (Adult)

RECOMMENDED VACCINES WHEN YOU TRAVEL TO ASIAN COUNTRIES

RECOMMENDED VACCINES WHEN YOU TRAVEL TO ASIAN COUNTRIES

Recommended Vaccines When You Travel to Asia

1) Hepatitis A

Risk increases with duration of travel and is highest for those who live in or visit rural settings, trek in back-country areas, or frequently eat or drink in areas with poor sanitation.

 

2) Typhoid Fever

Risk is higher where environmental sanitation and personal hygiene may be poor. The adventurous eater venturing “off the beaten track” should also consider vaccination.

 

3) Japanese Encephalitis

Risk for short-term travellers and for those staying in urban centres is very low. Risk increases with prolonged visits to rural settings, and outdoor, evening and night-time activities(eg cycling, camping, working outdoors, sleeping inunscreened structures).

 

4) Rabies

Should be considered in most parts of the world if exposure to animals is expected. Travellers spending time outdoors, especially rural areas, and who are involved in outdoor activities (eg cycling, camping, hiking outdoor work, caving) are at particular risk. Children are also considered higher risk because they tend to play with animals and may not report bites.

Note: This is a guide only. Advice by your healthcare professional will vary depending on destination, duration of travel, types of accommodation and what types of activities you take part in.

 

References:

1. Marshall GM. The Vaccine Handbook: A practical guide for clinicians, 4th edition. 2012.

2. Travel Clinics of America. Destinations 

3. World Health Organization. International Travel and Health 2014.

4. Kita Y, et al. Replacement of oral polio vaccine with inactivated polio vaccine and inclusion of Haemophilus influenzae type b vaccine in the national childhood immunization schedule. Epidemiological News Bulletin 2013; 39(2): 27-33

Download Teleme’s mobile app and consult a Vaccination Practitioner

 Dr. Suraya

Dr. Suraya

Vaccination Practitioner (Adult)

 

DURING YOUR TRIP: PREVENT POSSIBLE INFECTION

DURING YOUR TRIP: PREVENT POSSIBLE INFECTION

It’s easy to avoid someone coughing or sneezing but what to do when you’re stuck in a long haul with a crowd of coughing and sneezing passengers in a small space? Also, a healthy adult can be contagious with the flu for up to 7 days before showing any signs of the illness. Here are some ways to help you to sidestep potential infection.

1) Carry antibacterial wipes and hand sanitiser

Image source: Getty Images

Wipe down things like airplane bathroom faucets, the armrests, tray tables and other things touched by those who were there before you to prevent infection.

2) Cover your mouth when you sneeze or cough with a tissue or with your elbow

Image source: Places You’ll See

3) Wash your hands often

Image source: Pexels

Wash your hands often – especially after touching ATM buttons, airline check-in screens, handrails, elevator buttons, even money – with soap and water or hand sanitiser.

4) Keep your hands away from your face

Image source: Youngisthan

5) Stay hydrated

Image source: Secondwind

6) Turn off the overhead air jets at your airplane seat to avoid having all those germs blowing around.

7) Avoid jet-lag which can weaken your immune system by getting plenty of good sleep.

Image source: Stock Unlimited

When you feel tired while travelling, it’s your body’s way of saying you need a break so take heed and get a nap.

8) Continue to take your vitamins especially vitamins C and D which are critical for the immune system and for your overall health.

Image source:  Pexels

Reference:

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Influenza (Flu). How Flu Spreads, Travel Channel: Staying Healthy During Flu Season

Download Teleme’s mobile app and consult a Vaccination Practitioner

 

 Dr. Suraya

Dr. Suraya

Vaccination Practitioner (Adult)

 

BEFORE YOUR TRIP: PLAN FOR A SAFE AND HEALTHY JOURNEY

BEFORE YOUR TRIP: PLAN FOR A SAFE AND HEALTHY JOURNEY

Staying in good health while travelling can help ensure that your trip will be a happy and enjoyable one. Here’s a list of things to do before departure:

1) Gather information on your travel destinations and possible activities. Educate yourself on prevalent local diseases.

Image source: Pexels

 

2) Make sure to get your flu shot at least 2 weeks before travel because it takes 2 weeks for vaccine immunity to develop after the vaccination.

Image source: Amazing Discoveries

 

3) Bring medicines from home that you are familiar with and comfortable taking.

Image source: Shutterstock

Carry them in their clearly labeled, original containers. Check to see if you need to re-fill those bottles. If you’re carrying a travel medical kit with you, include the following:

i) Zinc throat lozenges: zinc stimulates the immune system

ii) Vitamin C: ideal for prevention.

Travellers should consider taking this daily during flu season travel.

4) Provide the following information for your healthcare provider to assess your health risks

Image source: Pexels

i) Travel destination(s) including stopovers

ii) Duration and season of the travel

iii) Purpose of travel

iv) Standard of accomodation

v) Activities planned

vi) Current health status and medical history

vii) Vaccination history

 

 

5) Carry a letter from your healthcare provider that includes a list of all pre-existing medical conditions and your prescriptions, including their generic names. Add the details of your emergency contact to the list.

However, by using Teleme to consult your doctor, you don’t have to carry letters anymore and you can view your letter from your doctor, prescriptions and medical conditions all accessible from Teleme’s app as long as you’re connected to the internet!

6) Consider bringing your own blanket or pillow.

Image source: 123rf

The blanket and pillow offered by airlines may be contaminated from the traveller using it before you. Stay on the safe side and bring your own travel pillow and blanket, especially if you’re taking a long flight. A blanket or wrap to keep you warm will be helpful if you’ve been exposed and are coming down with the flu.

References

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The Yellow Book. Health Information for International Travel 2014, Travel Insurance Review: 8 Steps to Prepare for Flu Season TravelCenters for Disease Control and Prevention. Influenza (Flu). Influenza Prevention: Information for Travelers 

Download Teleme’s mobile app and consult a Vaccination Practitioner

 

 Dr. Suraya

Dr. Suraya

Vaccination Practitioner (Adult)

 

HEALTHCARE CHECKLIST BEFORE YOU TRAVEL ABROAD

HEALTHCARE CHECKLIST BEFORE YOU TRAVEL ABROAD

Prepare Before You Travel Abroad
1) See Your Doctor

image credit: UCLA Newsroom

Planning before you travel abroad allows you to enjoy your trip with ease of mind and helps you stay healthy throughout the trip.
It is important to see your doctor and discuss about your travel plans before you leave.  Ask about any vaccinations or medications required for the destination, understand the health risks you could face in the places you’re traveling to and take preventive measures against illness and injury.
It’s also important to keep your doctor informed about your health condition and information about your travel such as:
i) Existing medical condition
ii) Pregnancy
iii) Vaccination history (see below)
iv) Traveling with kids
v) Traveling period
vi) Traveling activities if it involves high risk such as mountain climbing or diving

2) Equip Yourself with Proper Vaccination

image credit: Big Stock

See your doctor before travelling to ensure that you and your family are equipped with the recommended vaccination schedule.  WHO recommends that all travelers be up-to-date on their routine vaccinations listed below:

i) Measles, Mumps, Rubella (MMR)
ii) Influenza
iii) Tetanus, Diphtheria, Pertussis (TDaP)
iv) Hepatitis B
v) Polio
vi) Pneumococcal disease

Vaccination for the following diseases may also be recommended if the disease is common in the country you’re traveling to:

i) Hepatitis A
The hepatitis A virus is found in the faeces of people with infection. It’s usually spread by close personal contact with an infected person or by eating or drinking contaminated food or water handled by the infected person.

ii) Malaria
You’re at risk of getting malaria when you’re travelling to tropical or subtropical areas of Africa, Asia, the Pacific, Central and South America.  Malaria disease is transmitted by mosquito after getting bitten by an infected mosquito. Symptoms of malaria can be detected as early as 6 days to a couple of months later. Symptoms include fever, chills, headache, muscle ache, diarrhoea and malaise.

iii) Yellow Fever
Yellow fever is a viral infection transmitted by mosquitoes. Yellow fever occurs in parts of west and central Africa and South America. Although this illness rarely occurs in travelers, it’s important to equip yourself with the vaccination where the disease is present.

Infection can lead to two distinct phases of disease. The first phase of disease normally has symptoms such as fever, muscle pain, headache, nausea and vomiting.  Patients normally recover after a few days. Some patients will enter into a more serious phase where the fever returns, jaundice occurs and blood appears in vomit. This phase may be fatal to the patient if untreated properly.

iv) Typhoid
Typhoid fever are mainly spread to people who has travelled to places with poor hygiene such as parts of Africa, Asia, South and Central America and the Middle East.  It’s caused by the bacteria Salmonella Typhi and Salmonella Paratyphi which can be found in the blood, faeces and urine of the infected person. You can be infected by ingesting the bacteria through your mouth such as drinking contaminated water or eating contaminated food prepared by the infected person.

Symptoms include lethargic, headache, fever, stomach pain, constipation or severe diarrhoea, rose coloured spots on the body and weight loss.

v) Meningococcal Disease
Meningococcal disease is a result of bacterial infection of the blood and/or the membranes that line the spinal cord and brain.  Meningococcal disease spread by respiratory secretions such as coughing, sneezing or kissing. Disease is most likely spread through close contacts, such as living in the same household with the infected person, sexual contact with the infection person, partygoers contained in the nightclub for the whole night or children attending the same day care of the infected person for the day.

Symptoms in babies include fever, rapid breathing, vomiting or difficulty in feeding, irritability, lethargic and unusual crying.  Symptoms in adults include fever, headache, vomiting, diarrhoea, stiff neck, muscle or joint pains or feeling drowsy and confused.

vi) Rabies
Rabies is a disease spread through the bite or scratch by an infected animal such as dogs, monkeys, cats and bats. Rabies can be found in most parts of the world including Africa, the Americas, continental Europe and South-East Asia.

vii) Japanese Encephalitis (JE)
JE is commonly found in rural or farming areas where pigs are present such as China, parts of South-East Asia and the Pacific. JE is transmitted through infectious mosquito bites. The mosquitoes suck blood from sick birds or pigs pick up the pathogen and pass it on to their next victim.

Symptoms of severe JE include headache, high fever, confusion, disorientated, vomiting, seizure and mental status changes.

This is a guide of vaccines recommended for travel in the following continents.  Please consult your doctor for your vaccination requirements.

Note: Y – Required vaccination

3) Prescription Medications

image credit: Ultimate Everest

Ensure that you have packed your medication such as anti-malarial or anti-diarrhoeal tablets (prescribed by your doctor depending on the countries you’re going). Most importantly, make sure you have brought sufficient medication for your existing medical problems.  It is very difficult to obtain replacement overseas due to either strict regulations or access to pharmacies.

You’ll need to label your medicine properly and carry the prescription letter along for your travel in case you get stopped at the customs check point or if you need to get refill prescription.

4) First Aid Kit

Image Source: The Adventure Junkies

It’s useful to pack a first aid kit for your travel to prepare yourself for any unforeseen injuries or illness which contains the following:
i) Plasters, bandages, gauze, antiseptic, cotton-tipped applicators
ii) Sunscreen and after sun lotion
iii) Oral rehydration solution packets
iv) Insect repellents

5) Travel Medical Insurance Coverage

Image Source: UC Berkeley

Medical insurance covers the cost of medical expenses in the event of illness or accident. It’s important to know what type of medical coverage based on the countries you’re going to and/or the activities you’ll be participating.

6) Contacts for Doctor Abroad

In case of emergency, it’s best to have contact your tour agent or hotel staff. Keep a copy of your medication and medical history with you at all times so that you show it to any doctor during a medical emergency.  You can use the Medical Journey feature on Teleme to keep your medication and medical history.

7) Pack Appropriate Clothing and Footwear

Image Source: The Adventure Junkies

Planning ahead and packing the right type of clothing and footwear will reduce the chance of falling ill depending on the weather and geographical location of the country (ie in certain countries with poor cleanliness, wearing a proper footwear will protect your feet against parasites which can break through your skin).

Source: Healthy WA, Travel State Gov, WHO

Download Teleme’s mobile app and consult a Vaccination Practitioner

 

 Dr. Suraya

Dr. Suraya

Vaccination Practitioner (Adult)

 
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