We don’t like to think about getting injured or sick when traveling, but when it happens, being prepared can save your vacation.
It is time to take your family vacation. Your bags are packed, your hotel reservations are confirmed, and the taxi to the airport is waiting, but are you really prepared? Inside your bags do you have all the medications you might need and received the proper inoculations for this trip?
Firstly consider some basic preventative measures. Before going to any destination, the first thing you should do is consult a physician to find out if any inoculations are advised? Malaria stays with you your whole life, and Cholera might kill you, don’t make the mistake in believing you are immune to the bugs that inhabit this world. When planning your trip always assume the best and prepare for the worse. Get those shots, buy your medications and be aware of health warnings in every country you visit.
In some countries immunization is required before you arrive and in such instances, make sure you have your International Certificate of Vaccination. You can get this certificate from your local health department although many physicians can also provide you this form.
But even if you take all the immunization and recommended drugs before and during your travel, keep in mind that you may still become ill if exposed to contaminated water, food or insects. Bugs do mutate so regardless how prepared you became stateside, when visiting your travel location, you must still keep your guard up. Experienced travelers know this and take the trouble to boil water or buy trusted bottled water. They prepare many of their own meals, washing their foods carefully and making sure everything is well cooked. Mosquito netting is a must, preferably a full net for a bed, and a net-hat that covers you head and neck.
But in case you do become ill, make sure you have packed sufficient medical supplies. If you are in need of medications, bring a full supply that will last the entire trip. Medications overseas cannot always be depended on, either because the medication does not exist in that country or because the quality may be significantly different than what you are expecting.
The standards of medicine vary county to county but keep in mind that medical practitioners overseas sometimes don’t need a license and certainly don’t have insurance. ‘Oops’ is not an uncommon word in medical facilities in even many of the developing countries I have visited.
In short, here is my advice. Do your research, get those shots, pack all your medications and by all means, use your intelligence, keep aware, and have a safe and good trip.