What vaccines to get if you’re travelling overseas

What vaccines to get if you’re travelling overseas

Your bags are packed, flights are booked and visas organised – but are you really ready for your holiday?

Public health measures in Australia have limited the impact of many infectious diseases, but this is not always the case in some countries. Travelling can expose us to diseases you wouldn’t normally come across at home, which can, in rare cases, be fatal.

Vaccines and travel

Health risks overseas can vary not only from country to country, but from time to time, with some areas prone to disease outbreaks.

Our teammentions vaccines are an important aspect of looking after your health, and some countries require proof of vaccinations before you arrive. Vaccinating against diseases can ensure you enjoy your trip and make it home safely.

What vaccines do you need?

While some destinations require general vaccines, others may require something a little more specific.

This depends on what activities you might be undertaking, how long you’re travelling for, or what diseases are local to the area.

The Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade recommends checking whether you are up to date on vaccines provided as part of Australia’s childhood vaccination program, for example polio, tetanus, diphtheria, whooping cough, measles, mumps, rubella and varicella.

Most people receive these vaccinations as a child, but depending on your age, you may need a booster.

The World Health Organisation also recommends travellers maintain their routine vaccinations, such as the flu shot.

If you are travelling to several destinations or for an extended period, check if you need the yellow fever, meningitis, cholera, typhoid, or encephalitis vaccinations.

It’s also important to see whether you need an extended course of vaccinations to protect against hepatitis B or rabies.

In addition to vaccinations, you may require oral medications to ward off diseases like malaria.