TRAVEL HEALTH PROGRAM
JULY/AUGUST 2017 NEWSLETTER

Check out our Healthy Travel Checklist video below!

Healthy Travel Checklist Video - Watch Now

Current Zika Virus Recommendations

  • Check the World Map of Areas with Risk of Zika before you travel.
  • The recommendations for travelers to areas with risk of Zika are:
  • CURRENT PREGNANCY:  Women who are pregnant (in any trimester) should not travel to areas with risk of Zika. Men who have traveled to an area with risk of Zika who have a pregnant partner should abstain from sexual activity or consistently and correctly use condoms during sexual intercourse for the duration of the pregnancy.
  • MOSQUITO AVOIDANCE:  Prevent mosquito bites while traveling to areas with Zika virus transmission, and for three weeks after returning to the U.S.
  • PLANNING PREGNANCY:  If you or your partner are trying to get pregnant, consider avoiding nonessential travel to areas with a CDC Zika travel notice. Women should wait at least eight weeks after travel before trying to get pregnant. Men should either consistently and correctly use condoms during sexual intercourse or not have sexual intercourse for at least six months after travel to an area with Zika virus transmission.
  • SYMPTOMS AFTER TRAVEL:  Zika virus testing should be offered to people with symptoms of Zika virus disease, including pregnant women and others who develop symptoms during or following travel.

Outbreaks & Security Concerns

Africa

  • Check the World Map of Areas with Risk of Zika to find out about countries in Africa with risk of Zika. Refer to the Current Zika Virus Recommendations above on how to prevent Zika virus infection when traveling to these countries.
  • Cases of polio have been reported in Nigeria.  The CDC recommends that all travelers to Nigeria be fully vaccinated against polio. In addition, adults who have been fully vaccinated should receive a single lifetime booster dose of polio vaccine.
  • Cases of polio have been reported in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. The CDC recommends that all travelers to the Democratic Republic of the Congo be fully vaccinated against polio. In addition, adults who have been fully vaccinated should receive a single lifetime booster dose of polio vaccine.

Asia

  • Check the World Map of Areas with Risk of Zika to find out about countries in Asia with risk of Zika. Refer to the Current Zika Virus Recommendations above on how to prevent Zika virus infection when traveling to these countries.
  • Chinese health authorities have confirmed  human cases of avian influenza A (H7N9).Travelers to China should practice hygiene and cleanliness, eat food that is fully cooked, and avoid touching birds.

Caribbean, Central and South America

  • Check the World Map of Areas with Risk of Zika to find out about countries in the Caribbean, Central and South America with risk of Zika. Refer to the Current Zika Virus Recommendations above on how to prevent Zika virus infection when traveling to these countries.
  • An ongoing outbreak of yellow fever has been reported in Brazil as of December 2016. Health authorities have expanded the list of areas in which yellow fever vaccination is recommended for travelers. Travelers should consult with a yellow fever vaccine provider to determine if they should be vaccinated. Because of a shortage of yellow fever vaccine, travelers may need to contact a yellow fever provider well in advance of travel.

Europe

  • Health officials in France have reported an outbreak of measles. CDC recommends that all international travelers protect themselves by making sure they are appropriately vaccinated against measles.

Middle East

  • The annual Hajj, or pilgrimage to Mecca, Saudi Arabia, is among the largest mass gatherings in the world. In 2017, Hajj will take place from approximately August 30 to September 4. Because of the crowds, mass gatherings such as Hajj are associated with unique health risks. Before traveling to the Hajj, travelers should visit a travel health specialist for advice, make sure they are up to date on all routine and recommended vaccines, and learn about other health and safety issues that could affect the trip.

North America

  • Local transmission of Zika virus has been reported in Brownsville, Texas. The CDC has issued guidance for people who live in or traveled to Brownsville, Texas any time after November 28th, 2016. Please refer to the Current Zika Virus Recommendations above on how to prevent Zika virus infection.
  • Miami-Dade County was previously designated as a Zika cautionary area, but that designation was removed on June 2, 2017. This means that there are no longer any travel recommendations related to Zika virus for Miami-Dade County, Florida. Although the level of risk of Zika virus transmission after a cautionary area designation is removed is not known, it is likely to be low. However, sporadic cases may still occur. For this reason, CDC recommends that people living in or traveling to Miami-Dade County continue to protect themselves from mosquito-borne illnesses.

Pacific Islands

  • Check the World Map of Areas with Risk of Zika to find out about Pacific Islands with risk of Zika. Refer to the Current Zika Virus Recommendations above on how to prevent Zika virus infection when traveling to these countries.

Traveler Health & Safety Tips

Heading Home Health Video - watch now

The CDC recommends all travelers:

  • Visit a health care provider, ideally, 4 to 6 weeks before their trip for personalized health advice, vaccines, and medications.
  • Avoid bites from mosquitoes and other bugs by using an insect repellent and wearing long-sleeved shirts, long pants, closed shoes, and hats as much as possible.
  • Stay safe around animals. Do not pet, handle, or feed unfamiliar animals, even pets.
  • Be safe on international roads. Avoid overcrowded buses and cars, always wear a seat belt, and wear a helmet when riding a bike or motorcycle.
  • Wash their hands often with soap and water and use a hand sanitizer, as needed.

Resources

This email distribution tool is supported by funding from grant U01CK000175 of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to the Massachusetts General Hospital. The tool attempts to capture up-to-date notices and alerts at the time of posting; however, components of this information are constantly changing. By using this tool, you agree that the Massachusetts General Hospital and tool developers/supporters are not liable for any adverse outcomes, including those relating to travel.

 

  • Sign up for our monthly newsletter.

    Email address: