Travel Vaccines

Page 1 | 2Travel Vaccines

planeVaccine needs vary considerably from country to country, but the best place to start is with the recommended vaccine schedules for children and adults. In Utah, some vaccinations are required for school entry. However, most of the vaccines that are routinely administered in childhood require periodic booster doses throughout life to maintain an effective level of immunity. Adults often neglect to keep up the recommended schedule of booster vaccinations, particularly if the risk of infection is low. Additionally, some adults have never been vaccinated at all. It is important to realize that diseases such as diphtheria and poliomyelitis, which no longer occur in most industrialized countries, many be present in those visited by travelers. Pretravel precautions should include booster doses of routine vaccines if the regular schedule has not been followed, or a full course of primary immunization for people
who have never been vaccinated.

Additional vaccines are advised on the basis of a travel risk assessment for the individual traveler. In deciding which vaccines are appropriate, the following factors should be considered for each vaccine:

  • risk of exposure to the disease
  • age, health status, vaccination history
  • special risk factors
  • reactions to previous vaccine doses, allergies
  • risk of infecting others
  • cost

Mandatory vaccination, as authorized by the International Health Regulations, now concerns only yellow fever. Yellow fever vaccination is given for two different reasons:

(1) to protect the individual in areas where there is a risk of yellow fever infection, and
(2) to protect vulnerable countries from importation of the yellow fever virus.

Travelers should therefore be vaccinated if they visit a country where there is a risk of exposure to yellow fever. They must be vaccinated if they visit a country that requires yellow fever vaccination as a condition of entry. This condition applies to all travelers who arrive from (including airport transit) a yellow fever endemic country.

Visit the links under Travel Vaccines for additional information about travel vaccines.

Utah Travel Clinics
Missionary Immunization Recommendations
Yellow Fever Vaccination
Travel Vaccine Resources

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