Travel Health Update

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


  • The first case of Coronavirus was reported on 31 December 2019 in Wuhan city in China.  It has since spread worldwide.
  • The Omicron variant situation is rapidly evolving and the information is likely to change.  There are a number of countries, including the UK, that have detected it in their population. 
  • A number of countries have imposed travel restrictions on inbound travel. Countries with rising Omicron cases are likely to be subject to additional entry requirements in the coming days and weeks. Anticipate possible disruptions and short notice cancellations of flights and trips. 
  • For business and individuals travellers, review the need, risk and viability of travel.  
  • 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 or evidence may be required for entry to countries so please check the FCDO website. Follow local Government guidance on COVID-19 in each country.
  • The UK Government has set up a Global Travel Taskforce which has made recommendations.  More information here including red list countries and quarantine measures. Border controls are changing very quickly. From the 30th November, anyone travelling back to the UK will need to complete a Day 2 PCR test and isolate till they get the results (even if fully vaccinated) as per Government guidance here.
  • COVID-19 is spread via droplets of saliva or discharge from the nose when an infected person coughs or sneezes.  Practice good respiratory etiquette, do not touch your face and maintain good hand hygiene.
  • A reminder of the common symptoms: high fever, new continuous cough, loss of or change in normal sense of taste or smell.
  • Please remember to follow your local Government guidelines on coronavirus precautions.
  • If you are in the UK, the government states if you have these symptoms, however mild, self-isolate and get a PCR test via the NHS. If positive then you need to self-isolate at home for 10 days. If your symptoms worsen or are no better after 10 days then contact NHS 111. 
  • Download our COVID-19 infosheet here, or read about our COVID-19 services here.
  • More information can be found at the WHO, NHS, and FCO website.

Meningitis in DRC

  • From the 23rd October 2021, there have been 2,395 cases (including 200 deaths) in the north of DRC from bacterial meningitis.
  • Meningococcal meningitis is an acute disease that can cause a serious systemic infection. 
  • It is spread through sneezing, coughing or direct contact with respiratory secretions.
  • Risk to travellers is low but can increase of the individuals are planning to visit overcrowded areas such as busy markets, or have prolonged contact with the local population
  • Strict hand and respiratory hygiene is advised
  • More information can be found here.

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

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