TRAVEL ADVICE

Updated May 2022

The NHS has a very comprehensive website, giving the information you need to identify any vaccines advised for trips abroad and to ensure that you stay as healthy as possible. This can be found at www.fitfortravel.nhs.uk

It is your responsibility to ascertain which vaccinations (and, if relevant, anti-malaria tablets) you need, & also to inform yourself fully of recommended travel safe precautions. We do not offer travel advice at the surgery.

The following vaccinations are commonly required for many holiday destinations, and are free of charge on the NHS:

  • Diphtheria, tetanus & polio (combined)
  • Hepatitis A
  • Typhoid

These can be administered by a nurse at this surgery, if needed. Please book a 10 minute telephone appointment to inform us of your vaccination requirements and to ascertain stock levels.

Other vaccinations may be necessary for more exotic or unusual destinations, complex travel itineraries, or long stay vacations. These need to be given at a high street travel clinic (see the list at the bottom of the page). There will be a charge for these. We strongly advise you to check your requirements at least three months before travel, as sometimes a course of up to three vaccinations needs to be given over the course of several weeks.

To do this, you should visit www.fitfortravel.nhs.uk and follow these simple steps:

  1. Select the country you are visiting from the ‘destinations’ box on the left.
  2. Read the ‘Advice for all travellers’ information, following links in blue. This will give you detailed information about health risks abroad such as insect bites, sun-exposure, contaminated food and drink. Also advice is given about visas and health insurance and covid vaccination requirements.
  3. Note the ‘Courses or boosters usually advised’. If you have a record of your immunisations/vaccinations at home, see if you are up-to-date with the recommended vaccines.
  • Hepatitis A – if you have had two vaccinations, you are covered for 25 years (from the 2nd dose)
  • Diphtheria, tetanus & polio – If you have had 5 vaccinations in your life you may be covered. Boosters required every 10 years for some destinations only.
  • Typhoid – booster required every 3 years (for travel purposes only)

If you are unsure of when you had any previous vaccinations, ask the surgery for a printout of your vaccination history or view your history on patient access. You should keep a record of this. You can ring your previous surgery for immunisation history that we may not have. The ‘vaccinations sometimes advised’ section usually relates to back-packers, people travelling for more than 4 weeks, or special situations, e.g. working in health care projects, or with animals. If you are planning such a trip you need to make arrangements to have these at a high street travel clinic (E.G., Nomad, Sta Travel or Cotham Pharmacy). There will be a charge for these.

4. If you think that you need any of the vaccinations provided by the NHS, (in bold above) please make a telephone appointment with a nurse to discuss and check availability/stock levels. We do not offer appointments until you have this information. Do not book a face to face until we have spoken to you.

5. Read the information about Malaria, (if this is an issue where you are going), and follow the ‘precautions’ link. If anti-malaria tablets are advised for your destination, there will be a link to a ‘Malaria map’ which will show the details of the risk for your destination. The site will also indicate which anti-malaria tablets are effective in that region.

  • If proguanil and/or chloroquine are advised, these can be bought over the counter at a pharmacy.
  • If Atovaquone/proguanil (Malarone) or doxycycline or mefloquine (Lariam) are recommended, read through the information carefully, and go to a high street travel clinic to buy your supply.

These need to be started before entering a Malaria area, continued during the trip, & for a period of time after leaving, so you need plan ahead. We also advise you to take your itinerary and dates with you to work out how many you need to buy.

6. Read the entire section ‘other health risks’ which contains further up-to-date information about your travel destination, including current outbreaks, risks, etc.

TRAVEL SAFELY AND ENJOY YOUR HOLIDAY!

Useful contacts: