The information on these pages should be used to research health risks and to inform the pre-travel consultation. For advice regarding safety and security please check the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) website.
Travellers should ideally arrange an appointment with their health professional at least four to six weeks before travel. However, even if time is short, an appointment is still worthwhile. This appointment provides an opportunity to assess health risks taking into account a number of factors including destination, medical history, and planned activities. For those with pre-existing health problems, an earlier appointment is recommended.
While most travellers have a healthy and safe trip, there are some risks that are relevant to travellers regardless of destination. These may for example include road traffic and other accidents, diseases transmitted by insects or ticks, diseases transmitted by contaminated food and water, sexually transmitted infections, or health issues related to the heat or cold.
All travellers should ensure they have adequate travel health insurance.
A list of useful resources including advice on how to reduce the risk of certain health problems is available below.
Details of vaccination recommendations and requirements are provided below.
Travellers should be up to date with routine vaccination courses and boosters as recommended in the UK. These vaccinations include for example measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) vaccine and diphtheria-tetanus-polio vaccine.
Those who may be at increased risk of an infectious disease due to their work, lifestyle choice, or certain underlying health problems should be up to date with additional recommended vaccines. See the individual chapters of the ‘Green Book’ Immunisation against infectious disease for further details.
Please read the information below carefully, as certificate requirements may be relevant to certain travellers only. For travellers further details, if required, should be sought from their healthcare professional.
The vaccines in this section are recommended for most travellers visiting this country. Information on these vaccines can be found by clicking on the blue arrow. Vaccines are listed alphabetically.
Tetanus is caused by a toxin released from Clostridium tetani and occurs worldwide. Tetanus bacteria are present in soil and manure and may be introduced through open wounds such as a puncture wound, burn or scratch.
Travellers should thoroughly clean all wounds and seek appropriate medical attention.
Country specific information on medical facilities may be found in the ‘health’ section of the FCO foreign travel advice website.
The vaccines in this section are recommended for some travellers visiting this country. Information on when these vaccines should be considered can be found by clicking on the arrow. Vaccines are listed alphabetically.
Hepatitis B is a viral infection; it is transmitted by exposure to infected blood or body fluids. This mostly occurs during sexual contact or as a result of blood-to-blood contact (for example from contaminated equipment during medical and dental procedures, tattooing or body piercing procedures, and sharing of intravenous needles). Mothers with the virus can also transmit the infection to their baby during childbirth.
2% or more of the population are known or thought to be persistently infected with the hepatitis B virus (intermediate/high prevalence).
Travellers should avoid contact with blood or body fluids. This includes:
A sterile medical equipment kit may be helpful when travelling to resource poor areas.
Vaccination could be considered for all travellers, and is recommended for those whose activities or medical history put them at increased risk including:
Japanese Encepahalitis (JE)
Japanese encephalitis (JE) is a viral infection transmitted to humans from animals (mainly pigs and birds) by mosquitoes which typically breed in rice paddy fields, swamps and marshes. These mosquitoes predominantly feed between dusk and dawn.
Those at increased risk include travellers who are staying for a month or longer during the transmission season, especially if travel will include rural areas with rice fields and marshland.
Travellers on shorter trips (typically less than a month) and those who restrict their visits to urban areas are usually considered to be at very low risk.
Japanese encephalitis occurs in limited areas of this country with year-round transmission. The affected areas are the Islands of Torres Strait and the Cape York Peninsula (in the north east of Australia).
All travellers should avoid mosquito bites particularly between dusk and dawn.
Rabies (Bat Lyssavirus)
Although rare, bat lyssaviruses (bat rabies) can be transmitted to humans or other animals following contact with the saliva of an infected bat most often by a bite. The disease can also be transmitted if the saliva of an infected bat gets into open wounds or mucous membranes (such as on the eye, nose or mouth). Bat lyssaviruses can cause disease in humans that is indistinguishable from rabies.
Symptoms can take some time to develop, but when they do the condition is almost always fatal.
The risk to most travellers is low. However, it is increased for certain occupations for example bat handlers and veterinarians, or certain activities such as caving.
Rabies has not been reported in domestic or wild animals in this country; therefore most travellers are considered to be at low risk. However, bats may carry bat lyssavirus (bat rabies).
A full course of pre-exposure vaccines simplifies and shortens the course of post-exposure treatment and removes the need for rabies immunoglobulin which is in short supply world-wide.
The risk below may be present in all or part of the country.
Dengue is a viral infection transmitted by mosquitoes which predominantly feed between dawn and dusk. It causes a flu-like illness, which can occasionally develop into a more serious life-threatening form of the disease. Severe dengue is rare in travellers.
The mosquitoes that transmit dengue are most abundant in towns, cities and surrounding areas. All travellers to dengue areas are at risk.
There is a risk of dengue in the state of Queensland. At present the risk of dengue in other parts of Australia is minimal.
05 Sep 2017 New South Wales. Australia
As of 5 September 2017, an outbreak of hepatitis A has been reported with 12 cases in the past five weeks alone in Sydney and surrounding areas. An investigation has been launched.
05 Jun 2017
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As of 3 June 2017, a case of Japanese encephalitis is reported in a short term traveller to Thailand.
15 May 2017 Victoria. Australia
As of 12 May 2017, a total of 47 cases have been reported across Victoria this year; compared to 28 cases for the same period last year. A cluster in the Cranbourne area of Melbourne is currently being investigated.
18 Apr 2017 New South Wales. Australia
As of 13 April 2017, an outbreak of measles has been reported in western Sydney. There have been 21 confirmed cases in New South Wales with onset of symptoms in 2017.
10 Apr 2017 Australia
As of 24 March 2017, a total of 3,678 cases have been reported this year. The same period last year only saw 275 cases.
10 Apr 2017 New South Wales. Australia
As of 10 April 2017, a total of 835 cases have been reported this year. The last spike in cases were reported in February-March 2015.
06 Mar 2017 Western Australia. Australia
As of 6 March 2017, the number of cases are increasing sharply with 115, 141, and 91 in Western Australia in the last three months, respectively. The last spike in cases were reported two years ago.