Required Immunizations before Foreign Travel from Your Primary Care Doctor

Travel Immunizations New York, NY

Travel immunizations before leaving the country are a good way to ensure your health and safety on an international trip and even during seasonal travel at the end of the year. You and your loved ones need to be up to date on regular immunizations to be healthy. Depending on your destination, length of stay, and travel itinerary, there are a number of different vaccinations required. It is advisable to get your shots at least a month before you go.

An overview of travel immunizations

Vaccinations required for travel outside the United States are known as "travel immunizations." Before going overseas, kids and adults must ensure they have all of their recommended vaccinations.

Not all vaccinations are appropriate for everyone, and the requirement is often based on factors like age, destination, and the purpose of the journey. A primary care doctor may also suggest that individuals receive a vaccination or booster injection sooner than the regular schedule.

It is better to discuss the precise vaccines needed with the primary care physician to stay healthy when away from home. Remember that certain vaccines need more than one dosage to be fully effective. The bottom line is that starting the process early is the best choice.

Important travel vaccines

Examples of travel immunizations recommended include:

Hepatitis A and hepatitis B: these are dangerous infections that may lead to liver disease.

Japanese encephalitis: this condition is caused by a mosquito. For travelers who are going to be in Asia or the western Pacific for over a month, the doctor may suggest getting the Japanese encephalitis vaccination.

Malaria: this is a mosquito-borne illness that is widespread in subtropical and tropical climates, including parts of Africa and Asia. The doctor may prescribe an antimalarial medication from among numerous options to reduce the risk of contracting the disease. Unfortunately, there is currently no vaccination available.

Measles: this is a viral illness that may be contracted anywhere in the world, although it is rare in the United States. There is a need for measles, mumps, and rubella (MMR) vaccination for infants between the ages of six and 11 months old who will be traveling internationally. Usually, these vaccinations are often given ahead of schedule. Measles is a contagious illness.

Rabies: this is a fatal disease spread by animal bites. Rabies is a serious problem in several nations due to domesticated rabid dogs and other animals. Even though the danger of rabies is minimal, individuals may still need to be vaccinated if they intend to touch animals while on the trip. The rabies vaccination may also be used to treat the disease. Most individuals do not need rabies vaccination.

Tetanus: this is a severe bacterial infection of the nervous system. Vaccination against tetanus is standard practice. Travelers should obtain a tetanus booster if it has been more than ten years since their last shot. This shot is particularly important for those who are 65 or older.

Typhoid fever: this is a condition that may result from consuming tainted food or water. Typhoid vaccinations are recommended for those visiting areas where sanitation is questionable.

Yellow fever: this is a potentially fatal mosquito-borne illness. The yellow fever vaccination is needed to enter several countries in Africa and South America.

COVID-19: this highly infectious virus may cause anything from cold-like symptoms to a fatal respiratory infection. Due to the infectious nature of the COVID-19 virus, vaccination recipients should wait at least two weeks after receiving the last dose of a one-dose series or the second dosage of a two-dose series before traveling.

Consider vaccination timelines

You can get the travel immunizations you need by seeing your doctor at least one month before you go. It takes the body roughly two weeks after receiving a vaccination to develop immunity to it. So, get your shots a few months before you go.

Request an appointment here: or call Marina Gafanovich, MD at (212) 548-3263 for an appointment in our New York office.

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