Vac(cin)ation before Vacation

Discussion in 'General Discussion | Travel' started by Horse, Jul 31, 2011.  |  Print Topic

  1. Horse
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    Horse Gold Member

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    GETTING vaccinated may be the last thing on your mind when heading off on vacation, but it’s important — whether you are traveling to an exotic destination or not.

    Case in point: the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued a health advisory last month pointing out that the United States is currently experiencing the highest number of measles cases since 1996, many of which were acquired overseas. As of June 17, 156 confirmed cases of measles had been reported to the center this year; 136 of them involved unvaccinated Americans who had recently traveled abroad, unvaccinated visitors to the United States and people who didn’t travel but may have caught the disease from those who did.

    The advisory, which encourages travelers planning trips abroad to make sure they have had the M.M.R. (measles, mumps and rubella) vaccine before they leave, illustrates that it isn’t just far-flung places that are a source of concern — outbreaks are occurring in places like France, Britain, Spain and Switzerland. “Those of us who run travel clinics are very used to seeing people going to developing countries or tropical countries” getting the relevant shots, said Dr. David O. Freedman, a board member at the International Society of Travel Medicine and a professor of medicine and epidemiology at the University of Alabama at Birmingham. “But nobody thinks about it when they go to Europe.”


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    PRACTICAL TRAVELER
    Planning a Vac(cin)ation
    By MICHELLE HIGGINS
    Published: July 27, 2011

    A version of this article appeared in print on July 31, 2011, on page TR3 of the New York edition with the headline: Planning a Vac(cin)ation.
     
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  2. jbcarioca
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    jbcarioca Gold Member

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    Good advice. For many years i have tried to keep them all up-to-date. After all, it is cheap insurance.
     
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  3. BurBunny
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    BurBunny Silver Member

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    Huge advocate of preventative vaccinations, even if going to areas where they are only recommended, not required. Just updated my polio and typhoid when I got YF vac a couple months ago, have had the full series of Hep A/B as well, and MMR booster back in my teens. Had hoped flu vac for this year was going to be out in time for my August Africa trip, but will have to get it in Sep when I return before my Oct/Nov travels.

    Now just need to fill my malaria scripts and I'll be good to go!

    YF is controversial, as it is a live vaccine, and no killed version available. For some, it's not recommended. I'm in that group, and had consequently avoided countries such as Brazil in the past as it wasn't worth it to me to risk it for Brazil alone. However, when Africa travel became a reality in my future, worked with my doc to monitor my reaction and be prepared if necessary for an adverse reaction. Thankfully none happened, but was prepared. Now I can plan a trip to Rio! Woohooo!

    Why did I opt not to take the medical waiver instead? Main reason is that it would potentially impact future travel as there are many countries which will refuse entry if you've been to a YF-impacted country but did not have the injection (among them China, Chile, Ecuador and others). Second was that some bureaucrats won't accept the waiver at entry without a lot of trouble. Final reason was I fear YF more than I feared the reaction for long term health implications. YMMV.
     
  4. Horse
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    Horse Gold Member

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    Even without traveling, the tetanus booster is beneficial to the general public.

    And I protect myself with the seasonal and H1N1(swine) flu combination vaccine. I don't feel like picking either up from a sick individual on the plane and having my vacation ruined.
     
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