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What's the most important thing when it comes to travel preparation?
The very most important thing is to make sure your passport is current and not going to expire. The second would be a risk assessment of the location, that being water safety, are there insects that you might encounter such as mosquitoes, if you have a physical limitation.
What if I have a current medical condition?
You may need to talk to your primary care provider or if you have a serious medical problem, talk to your specialist.
How should I handle my medications?
Make a list of your medications with their generic names and a list of allergies with their reaction types. If you have heart disease, include an electrocardiogram or any special situation. You want to have those notes with you in case there was an emergency overseas.
Am I insured overseas?
Check your medical insurance to make sure it does cover you for your travel or purchase travel insurance.
Will I need to get any vaccines prior to my trip?
There are three kinds of vaccines. The routinely administrated vaccines, recommended vaccines that would be specific for certain destination and then there’s required vaccines for special situations. The routine vaccines consist of those that you usually get in childhood or as an adult. For recommended vaccines, that would be usually two trips to an overseas area or the developing world and most particularly that would be hepatitis A vaccine, which would be necessary for most any location and for some places depending on the duration of travel, typhoid vaccine and then there’s special situations for other vaccines particularly if you’re going to rural Africa or rural South America.
What if I become ill while traveling overseas?
It might not be a bad idea to check in with your physician, particularly if it was a diarrheal illness. If you have been to an area with malaria, any fever in the next one to two years, you should remind your doctor that you did travel to an area with malaria. Or if you had freshwater exposure in a developing country, that might warrant an evaluation for any fever.
For More Information
To learn more or to find a Sharp-affiliated physician, search for San Diego doctors or call 1-800-82-SHARP (1-800-827-4277), Monday through Friday, 8 am to 6 pm. To find general information about travel medicine, visit Travel Medicine in Adult Health or read the Travel Health News archive.