Travel VaccinationsNew York, NY
Travel vaccinations protect patients from health risks when traveling abroad. Finding a knowledgeable doctor to help plan your vaccinations is important. This way, you can have peace of mind and protect your health and the health of others when you travel.
Dr. Marina Gafanovich offers travel vaccinations in Manhattan and the surrounding area. Our knowledgeable staff will help you be ready for your trip. To learn more or schedule an appointment, call 212-548-3263 today.
What are Travel Vaccinations
Traveling abroad can be exciting but requires planning and safety precautions. An important part of these efforts is getting the right travel vaccinations, also known as travel immunizations. These are a set of vaccinations travelers are required or recommended to get before they go abroad. Their purpose is to protect the traveler from contracting diseases abroad, spreading them, or bringing them back home. Travel vaccinations are vital to protecting oneself and others when traveling outside the country.
Planning is crucial when it comes to travel vaccinations. For many reasons, Dr. Gafanovich recommends patients start the process several months in advance. Chief among these reasons to start early is that vaccines take time to get into a person’s system and start working. Also, some vaccines may require multiple shots up to a month apart. In addition, patients may need referrals to other physicians for certain vaccinations.
Common Travel Vaccines
Each patient's situation will vary. A patient's vaccination needs will depend on factors such as their health, age, where they are traveling, and how long they will be abroad. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), commonly needed first time vaccines and boosters include:
- Flu (Influenza)
- Hepatitis A
- Hepatitis B
- Japanese encephalitis
- MMR (Measles, Mumps, Rubella)
- Tdap (Tetanus, Diphtheria, Pertussis)
- Yellow fever
Some more rare vaccines, such as Rabies, Japanese Encephalitis, and Yellow Fever are not available through our office. However, Dr. Gafanovich can refer you to a provider specializing in these vaccinations.
How the Process Works
To help protect a patient's health while traveling, Dr. Gafanovich will take the time to review a patient's health history. First, she wants to ensure the patient is up to date on their routine vaccines before discussing travel vaccines. Next, she will discuss with the patient where they are traveling, how long, and the nature of their travel. She will determine what vaccines are required and recommended based on these travel factors and the patient's age (there are additional requirements for children and elderly), pregnancy status, and whether or not a patient is immune compromised.
Planning Ahead and Things to Consider
The doctor recommends starting the process six months before departure. This allows ample time to receive all vaccines, including ones that require a referral to another physician. The patient should be ready to discuss all relevant health information, including current conditions, health status, vaccination history, and medications they are taking.
In addition to standard health information, there are important details about the patient's travel plans they should discuss with the doctor. Details that can affect a person's risk of disease and the vaccines they need include:
- Activities planned
- Diet while traveling
- Lodging (hotel, hostel, or camping)
- Modes of transportaion
- Will they be in urban or rural areas
- Season the patient is traveling
Staying Healthy While You travel
The doctor will also discuss with the patient additional steps they can take when they travel to stay safe and well. The advice each patient gets will depend on their situation and where they are going. Common suggestions include planning ways to protect against insect bites when traveling in countries where insect-borne diseases are prevalent. In addition, it is important to understand which foods are safe to eat. Also, in most cases, drinking water should be either bottled or boiled.
Some advice for healthy travel is universal. Handwashing is always a must. Some healthcare providers suggest using an alcohol-based hand sanitizer. It is also a good idea to avoid touching one's face and mouth frequently since this is a major way pathogens enter the body.
Schedule a Visit Today
Travel vaccinations are available at our Upper East Side Manhattan office. Dr. Marina Gafanovich will ensure you have all the vaccinations you need for your trip. Call our office at 212-548-3263 to learn more or schedule an appointment.
Frequently Asked Questions About Travel Vaccinations
Q. What if my travel is an emergency situation?
A. Ideally, a person will allow months or weeks for international travel preparation. However, we realize that emergencies cannot be avoided. If you find yourself dealing with a situation such as a family emergency, make an appointment with us and request expedited travel shots.
Q. Are travel immunization covered by my insurance?
A. It is likely there is some coverage. However, all health plans are different. We advise patients to contact their health insurance company directly for this information.
Q. Are there any risks or side effects to travel vaccinations?
A. Risks and side effects vary by vaccination. None are without either. However, in most cases, the risks and side effects are minimal compared with the risk of getting the disease. During your appointment, we will review the risks and side effects of each recommended and required vaccination and advise you accordingly.
Q. Where can I find out what the country I am traveling to requires and recommends?
A. The doctor is well-versed in travel medicine and will be able to advise you during the appointment. However, it is always a good idea to do a little research on your own, and the internet offers a wealth of information on this topic. For example, the CDC lists the requirements by country here.
Q. What is the difference between a required and recommended vaccine?
A. Required vaccines are ones you must get and present proof of in order to travel to a particular country. Recommended vaccines are ones that are suggested for a particular country. We recommend you get both types. For example, there are many countries that do not require a yellow fever vaccination even though there is a significant risk of encountering the virus.
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