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If you are travelling overseas for business or holiday, it is important that you stay healthy, fit and safe. At Spring Medical Group, we provide travel medicine advice and immunisations. Common conditions to be aware of include:

  • Traveller’s diarrhoea: Diarrhoea is the most common illness acquired overseas, affecting 20% to 50% of people travelling short-term from developed to developing areas. It is caused by a wide range of pathogens. While strains of enterotoxigenic Escherichia coli (ETEC) are the most common cause, the incidence of each pathogen varies according to the location of acquisition. Salmonella and Campylobacter appear to be increasing in importance in Asia; norovirus is the predominant cause of infection on cruise ships.

    The risk of travellers’ diarrhoea can be substantially reduced by taking simple precautions in areas where clean water and food hygiene cannot be guaranteed. These precautions include selecting freshly cooked foods that are served steaming hot; fruit that can be peeled; and beverages that are bottled, canned or recently boiled. Travellers should avoid raw or undercooked food (particularly meat or seafood), fresh salads, peeled fruit, unpasteurised milk or milk products, unboiled water, and ice. Foods sold by roadside vendors often pose the greatest infection risk.

  • Malaria: Recommendations for malaria prophylaxis from different health authorities and experts vary considerably. For specific geographical locations, useful information about the risk of malaria and antimalarial susceptibility patterns is available from:
    – World Health Organization (WHO). International travel and health 2014.
    – Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). CDC Health information for international travel (Yellow book) 2014.Alternatively, individualised advice can be obtained from travel medicine clinics and other expert advisory services. This approach is strongly recommended for children, pregnant women, people staying in malaria-endemic regions for longer than 8 weeks, people with complex travel itineraries, and people travelling to high-risk areas.
  • Respiratory diseases: Many common respiratory illnesses and diseases are spread by coughing, sneezing, laughing and close personal contact. Respiratory diseases are highly contagious, yet easily preventable by immunisation and simple measures such as keeping away from people who are coughing or sneezing and keeping hands clean.
  • Hepatitis A, B and C: Talk to your doctor about these
  • Rabies: Rabies is a deadly, but vaccine-preventable viral disease. If you are travelling to a country where you may be at risk of this condition, you need to talk to one of our doctors. Although rare in travellers, rabies does occur in many countries around the world, with the highest risk in developing countries.
  • Yellow Fever: This is also preventable.

For other conditions you may be worried about, please book an appointment with one of our doctors to discuss your travel concerns.