Travel Health

Monthly Travel Health Update

A monthly update on disease outbreaks around the world, from our Lead Nurse JO THOMPSON.

COVID-19 Update

  • As of 28th April 2021, there have been 148,128,030 confirmed cases of Coronavirus worldwide with over 3.1 million deaths.  
  • There has been a rapid increase in cases and deaths in India with a new variant. 
  • Travellers are reminded that due to the COVID-19 pandemic, there are travel and border restrictions, the FCO  advises British nationals against all but essential international travel to many locations.  These are under constant review. Any country or area may restrict travel without notice. COVID free certificates may be required for entry to countries so please check the FCO website. Follow local Government guidance on COVID in each country.
  • The UK Government have set up a Global Travel Taskforce which has made recommendations including the launch of the new traffic light system for International travel. More information here including  red list countries.
  • COVID-19 is spread via droplets of saliva or discharge from the nose when an infected person coughs or sneezes.  Practice good respiratory etiquette and do not touch your face.
  • A reminder of the common symptoms: high fever, new continuous cough, loss of or change in normal sense of taste or smell.
  • Remember – HAND HYGIENE – Wash your hands more often than usual, for 20 seconds using soap and hot water, particularly after coughing, sneezing and blowing your nose, or after being in public areas.  Use alcohol based hand sanitiser if that’s all you have access to. 
  • Remember – RESPIRATORY HYGIENE – To reduce the spread of germs where a mask in public places. When you cough or sneeze, if not wearing a mask, cover your mouth and nose with a tissue, or your sleeve, and throw the tissue in a bin immediately. Then wash your hands or use a hand sanitiser. 
  • Remember – GENERAL HYGIENE – Clean and disinfect regularly touched objects and surfaces using your regular cleaning products to reduce the risk of passing the infection on to other people.
  • Remember – KEEP DISTANCE – try to keep at least 2 metre away from people not in your household bubble
  • Remember – VENTILATION – try open windows where able, to limit transmission.
  • Please remember to follow your local Government guidelines on coronavirus precautions.
  • If you are in the UK: 
  • The UK government states –  If you have these symptoms, however mild, stay at home and do not leave your house for at least 10 days from when the symptoms started.  If you live with others then all your household members must stay at home and not leave the house for 10 days.  If your symptoms worsen or are no better after 10 days then contact NHS 111.  
  • If you have any symptoms of COVID-19 then please arrange for a test via NHS.uk or phone 119.
  • An information sheet on COVID-19  is available to download here
  • You can also visit our website for more resources related to COVID-19 here.
  • More information can be found at WHONHS and the FCO website. 

World Malaria Day – 25th April

  • Every year there are more than 200 million new cases of malaria, which is a preventable and treatable disease.
  • According to the latest World Malaria Report, there were an estimated 229 million cases of malaria and 409,000 malaria-related deaths in 87 countries in 2019. 94% of all malaria cases and deaths worldwide occurred in the World Health Organization (WHO) African region.
  • Children under 5 years are the most vulnerable group affected by malaria, and in 2019 in sub-Saharan Africa accounted for approximately two thirds of global deaths from malaria.
  • Despite the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic, the number of malaria-endemic countries making impressive progress in their journey to becoming malaria-free, or reporting zero indigenous malaria cases (a strong indicator that malaria elimination is within reach) continues to increase.
  • Advice for travellers: Malaria is spread by the bite of the female Anopheles mosquito. Most Anopheles species prefer to feed between dusk and dawn which is when most transmission of malaria occurs.
  • Country-specific malaria risk can be found from the Thrive nursing team. If malaria is present in a particular country, a malaria map and accompanying prevention advice is provided, following the A, B, C, D of malaria prevention format:
  • Awareness of risk – a summary description of the malaria risk for that country.
  • Mosquito Bite prevention – practical measures to take to avoid mosquito bites.
  • Chemoprophylaxis – country specific chemoprophylaxis advice.
  • Diagnosis and treatment – information on the signs and symptoms of malaria and the importance of prompt treatment.

World Immunisation Week – 24-30th April

  • World immunisation week is celebrated each year to promote the use of immunisations (vaccines) to protect people of all ages against disease. For over 200 years, vaccines have been protecting us against diseases that threaten lives, such as poliomeasles and smallpox; and are widely recognised as one of the world’s most successful health interventions, saving millions of lives each year. Unfortunately, there are still approximately 20 million children and adults in the world not receiving the vaccines they need.
  • As the world currently focuses on new vaccines to protect against COVID-19, it is important to ensure routine vaccinations are not missed. Many children have not been vaccinated during the global pandemic, leaving them at risk of serious diseases such as measles and polio.
  • Before you are travelling, please see your travel health advisor for immunisation information. 

Information from Travel Health Pro, World Health Organisation, Travax and Fit for Travel.

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