Know before you go: Travel Vaccinations


April 11, 2017
 
There is a lot to know before you go; particularly when it comes to vaccinations.
Your health really is your wealth, especially when you are working away from family, friends and your usual support network. Depending on where your new job is, there may be illnesses and diseases that your current set of vaccinations don’t cover. If you are moving to a tropical climate there may also be a risk of malaria.
Some vaccinations take 4-6weeks to activate, so make sure to make your appointment well in advance of your travel date.
There are a few things you need to consider when planning your vaccinations:
 

As many were given to you as a baby this may take some research:

  • Search medical records
  • Ask parents or siblings
  • Check with your family doctor
     

An easy way to talk to your doctor is to break existing vaccinations into:

Routine: the vaccinations you may have received as a baby e.g. measles and mumps.

Required: what you know you need for the destination you are travelling to e.g. yellow fever.

Recommended: anything else the doctor recommends for that destination. 

There is a recommendation that everyone traveling to developing, tropical or remote locations have a basic combination of vaccinations to protect from illnesses that may be more prevalent there. These include:

  • Tetanus
  • Hepatitis A
  • Typhoid

Required vaccinations depend on the country you are travelling to. The World Health Organisation provide a comprehensive list of countries and the compulsory vaccines on their website. If you are travelling from or to a country with yellow fever you will need certification to show you have been vaccinated to enter.

The table below contains recommended and required vaccines as well as whether malaria medication is needed, for some of the most common destinations for expat employment:

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Country  Vaccinations Malaria Medications
China

Tetanus
Hepatitis A
Typhoid
Yellow fever certification

W.H.O. report malaria transmission in this country in certain areas. Consult your doctor.

India

Tetanus
Hepatitis A
Typhoid
Poliomyelitis
Yellow fever certification

Yes
Malaysia

Tetanus
Hepatitis A
Typhoid
Yellow fever certification

Yes    
South Africa

Tetanus
Hepatitis A
Typhoid

W.H.O. report malaria transmission in this country in certain areas. Consult your doctor.
Qatar

Tetanus
Hepatitis A
Typhoid

No
UAE

Tetanus
Hepatitis A

W.H.O. report malaria transmission in this country in certain areas. Consult your doctor.

Vaccinations are very successful at preventing many illnesses. However the World Health Organisation say they rarely protect 100% of recipients so it is still important to avoid situations that put you at high risk, like consuming potentially contaminated food or water.

If you do become unwell while abroad make sure you can access the best possible care with comprehensive international health insurance. We have a range of policies that are likely to meet your needs get in touch, if you have any questions. We would love to answer them.