Thinking of taking a trip this summer? Whether itís a 'serious travelling round Latin America', trekking in Nepal or a cut price package to Turkey, you still need to find out about health risks, and how to avoid them, so you have a good holiday, and don't come back with more than you bargained for!
Many diseases you will encounter can be avoided by the way you behave, others are preventable by immunisation. Why take risks? Go and see your health centre nurses for advice on which jabs you need and how to schedule them. They can also advise on how to stay well whilst away and still have a great time. Some courses of vaccination take over a month so make sure you book early.
Nurses are not psychic, though, so you need to know which vaccinations you have had in the past, especially if you have previously had jabs specifically for travel: HINT: look for a little book in your old passport/ask your MumÖ.
You also need to know currently recommended immunisations for your trip. Find the information from MASTA (Tel. 09068 224100 or if you are going to more than 6 countries 01705 553933) or check out the Fitfortravel web site. Even if you are a very experienced traveller, do check every trip, as disease patterns and vaccine schedules change frequently. For example, recently it has become possible to offer hepatitis B vaccination over 3 weeks rather than 2 months. The recommended drugs to prevent malaria are particularly likely to vary within regions and from one season to the next.
Bring both lots of information with you to your appointment and the nurse will clarify what you personally need for this trip, and how much it will cost. Health centres have to charge for some vaccinations, but the charges are usually very reasonable.
Don't just sit there-plan something!
Fit For Travel
This article published on
12 December 2005
Next review date 01/12/2013