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Figures show how threatening rabies is for travellers
Protection against rabies is a vital part of all-round travel safety in many parts of the world As we enter into the summer months, many of us will have holidaying and travelling on our minds. However, along with planning activities and packing your swimwear, it’s important to take the time to consider travel safety before you go away. Many countries possess the risk of viruses and infections which can seriously impact your health while abroad. One such risk is rabies. In fact, recent figures reveal just how much of a threat rabies can be for travellers worldwide. We’re here to take you through these figures, and show you how you can prevent rabies from not only ruining your holiday but even putting your life at risk. The figures Here are some of the most recent statistics surrounding the rabies virus, putting into perspective how important it is to protect yourself when you travel to Asia, Africa and Central and South America in particular. – Human rabies is present in all continents except for Antarctica, and is active in over 150 countries and territories across the world. More than 59,000 people die every year from rabies, and over 95 per cent of these deaths occur in Asia and Africa. This equates to nearly one death every nine minutes – Around 40 per cent of people who are bitten by animals are suspected to be carrying rabies are children under the age of 15 years old. While the rabies virus can be transmitted by any infected animal to humans, the World Health Organisation (WHO) estimates that dogs are by far the main source of death caused by human rabies. In fact, dogs contribute up to 99 per cent of all rabies transmissions to humans. Advice for travellers The rabies virus is spread by contact with saliva from any infected wild or domestic animal, usually via a bite, scratch or lick to an open wound. Certain activities like cycling and running can increase the risk of rabies exposure. If you plan on travelling for an extended period and seeking employment, taking on work as a vet, animal control officer, wildlife worker or animal shelter volunteer can also increase your risk of infection. For humans, contracting rabies is usually fatal. Travellers should avoid any contact with wild or domestic animals when travelling, including other people’s pets. If you are travelling with children, be sure to keep them away from any animals as they are at the greatest risk. Children are more likely to touch animals and less likely to report a bite or scratch. If you or one of your fellow travellers does receive an animal bite or scratch, soak the area beneath a running tap for several minutes and was thoroughly with soap or detergent to remove saliva. You must also seek immediate medical attention after receiving a bite, scratch or lick to an open wound, no matter how trivial it seems. It is important to receive prompt post-exposure treatment even if you have received pre-exposure treatment and washed the wound immediately after receiving it. For the best rates of immunization against the rabies virus, it is absolutely vital to receive the necessary vaccination before you travel. This is particularly true if you plan on travelling to Asia, Africa or South or Central America. Be sure to leave plenty of time between your vaccination and your travel. For protection against rabies and a host of other potential health threats, visit Express Travel Clinic before you leave. Contact our team today by calling 0208 993 58 89 or click here to book an appointment.
European Immunization Week is almost here
The annual awareness event starts on 23rd April 2018 Immunization is arguably the most important factor when it comes to staying healthy abroad. In fact, immunization currently prevents between 2 and 3 million deaths a year. This makes initiatives like European Immunization Week vital to travel health. European Immunization Week is a campaign used to promote the key message that immunization is a necessary precaution in preventing diseases and protecting lives. The slogan of this year’s European Immunization Week is Prevent. Protect. Immunize — a perfect summary of what effective immunization can do. The campaign will be celebrated from 23rd to 29th April 2018, and aims to spread the importance of immunization across the region. Prevent. Protect. Immunize: a region-wide initiative European Immunization Week aims to raise awareness of immunization’s importance, with the ultimate goal of increasing vaccination coverage across Europe. Even though more children are being immunized than ever before (86% of children under the age of one), there are still numerous fatalities globally which could be easily prevented by immunization. By promoting information on immunization among parents, caregivers, healthcare professionals, policy and decision-makers and the media, European Immunization Week hopes to increase the number of immunizations taking place and therefore save lives in the process. The campaign is led and coordinated by the World Health Organisation as well as its European Region division, and all Member States in the WHO European Region are invited to take part. It is also supported by several major regional and national partners, including the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC). Many national ministers and ambassadors have offered high-level support for the campaign, while on the regional level the initiative has been supported by WHO/Europe’s Patron, Her Royal Highness Crown Princess Mary of Denmark. European Immunization Week has been organised in conjunction with several other important WHO regional activities, and World Immunization Week. Immunization is one of the most important factors to overall travel health Travelling to other countries can leave you vulnerable to an array of health concerns which you wouldn’t normally experience at home, and this is what immunization helps to protect travellers from. Travel vaccinations help to protect individuals from numerous conditions that can be dangerous or even fatal, such as yellow fever, meningitis, cholera and hepatitis A and B. Travel vaccinations are there to minimise your chances of becoming seriously ill when abroad. The need for vaccinations is largely dependent on where in the world you plan to travel. Whilst areas like North America, Australia and Northern and Central Europe are unlikely to require vaccinations before travel, other areas like South and South East Asia and South America require vaccinations in order to ensure your health and safety abroad. Some countries, like Saudi Arabia, even refuse entry without proof of vaccination. Vaccination should be a staple part of your travel preparations, so be sure to research your intended destination thoroughly to see which immunizations you’ll need to receive. The NHS recommends that you receive advice about the necessary vaccinations at least eight weeks in advance of your travels, as many vaccinations should be given well in advance. So make sure you don’t leave your vaccinations too late. Express Travel Clinic have four walk-in travel clinics located throughout the capital, conveniently situated to administer vital vaccinations without appointment. Express Travel Clinic can help you receive the necessary vaccinations for your travels. Contact our team today by calling 0208 993 58 89, or click here to book and appointment.