Travel Vaccines

Prevention is better than cure                                               

Travel health information for people travelling abroad   -

Most travel related illnesses can be prevented by simple measures such as:

(A) Travel vaccine if indicated

(B) Taking care with food and water

(C) Taking measures to avoid insect bites

(D) Anti Malaria Medication

(E) Avoid dangerous sports and activites

(A) Travel Vaccinations

Many travel related diseases can be prevented using vaccinations. Ideally get the vaccination 2 months before departure as some vaccines require more than one dose. Last minute travellers should still seek advice in order to get the vaccination.


  • Exists in countries where standards of hygiene are poor.
  • Spread by contaminated food or water and affects the liver.
  • Two doses of the vaccine will protect you for at least 10 years.


  • Exists in countries where standards of hygiene are poor.
  • Speads by contaminated food or water and can cause severe illness.
  • Single vaccine could provide protection for up to 3 years.


  • Tetanus occus world wide and can be fatal
  • Tetanus spores in soil and could enter the body through cuts and scratches
  • Recommended tetanus vaccine for adult is combined with Diphtheria vaccine


  • Serious disease spread through coughing and sneezing
  • Recommended Diphtheria vaccine for adults is combined with tetanus vaccine


  • Exists in some developing countries due to poor sanitation
  • May cause paralysis and death
  • Booster vaccination provides protection for 10 years


  • Exists in parts of South America and Sub-Saharan Africa
  • Spread by mosquitoes. Symptoms could be mild to severe and even could cause death
  • Some countries deny entry without proof of Yellow Fever vaccination.
  • Yellow fever certificate is available at designated Yellow Fever centres including Jervis Medical centre and should be given at least 10 days before travelling.
  • Yellow fever vaccine can be given from 9 months of age


  • Fatal disease which is present in most countries
  • Spread by the saliva from the bite or scratch of infected animals
  • Infected animals could look healthy
  • You will need 3 injections over 3 to 4 weeks
  • Despite having 3 vaccinations, if you are bitten abroad you will need further rabies vaccines and you should seek medical attention immediately.


  • Attacks liver and is extremely infectious
  • Contracted through blood, blood transfusion, body piercing, sharing needles, tattoing, sex, bodily fluid such as semen.
  • You will need 3 to 4 doses.

(B) Taking care with food & water

  • Remember to boil it, cook it, peel it or forget it
  • Drink bottled water at all times, if you have any doubts about the water boil it or sterilise it with disinfectant tablets.
  • Use bottled water for cleaning teeth, avoid ice, avoid salads, peel your fruits and avoid uncooked foods.
  • Have oral hydration treatment such as dioralyte

(C) Insect bites & Mosquitos

  • Insect and mosquito bites could cause serious diseases such as malaria, yellow fever, dengue fever and japanese encephalitis
  • Cover your skin, wear trousers and long sleeves
  • Use insect repellent such as Deet based insect repellent
  • If necessary use mosquito nets impregnated with insect repellent
  • use anti-malaria tablets if indicated.


Malaria is a common and serious tropical disease transmitted by mosquito bites.  Poor compliance with anti malarial tablets is the major reason for malaria in travellers. 
Adverse effects to anti-malarial tablets are common, but most are minor.

You should remember that malaria tablets don’t provide full protection, so malaria prevention precautions are important such as:

1. Preventing mosquito bites by covering up with clothing and using insect repellent
2. Comply with anti malarial tablets
3. Fever or flu should be investigated as soon as possible

1.   Malarone

It is taken once daily commencing 2 days before entering malarial zone, continue while in the malarial zone and 7 days after leaving malaria zone.

2.   Doxycycline

It is taken on a daily basis commencing 2 days before entering malarial zone, continue while in the malarial zone and 4 weeks after leaving malaria zone, you should take it with a large amount of fluids.  Contraindications of using doxycycline:-

Breast feeding
Children <8
Previous reaction to sun light

Side Effects with doxycycline.
• Increase sensitivity to sun light, especially in light skinned people, therefore use a high blocking factor agent.
• Abdominal discomfort, nausea, diarrhoea.
• Take extra precaution if taking contraception such as the pill.( eg condom)
• May cause vaginal thrush

3.   Mefloquine  (Lariam)

Commence mefloquine once a week, 3 weeks before travelling to malarial zone. Continue while in malarial zone and 4 weeks after leaving malaria zone.  Mefloquine should be taken after food with plenty of fluids and the same day every week.  If you experience any side effects you should inform your doctor.
You should avoid lariam in the first 3 months of pregnancy and also avoid getting pregnant while on lariam and for 3 months after completing treatment.

Side Effects associated with Mefloquine:

• Abdominal discomfort, Nausea
• Dizzy, headache
• Anxiety, depression, hallucination
• Sleep disturbance
• Skin Irritation

Please tell us if:

1. Breast feeding or pregnant
2. You have a history of psychiatric disturbances or convulsions
3. You have liver or kidney problems
4. You take Quinine tablets or medication for blood pressure, epilepsy or anticoagulants
5. You have any heart condition.

4.   Chloroquine

It is taken once each week commencing 1 week before entering a malarial zone, continue while in the malarial zone and 4 weeks after leaving malaria zone.

Side Effects associated with Chloroquine:

• Abdominal discomfort, nausea
• Unpleasant taste
• Dizzy / Headache
• Blurring vision
• Skin irritation
• Psoriasis may be aggravated and generally patient with epilepsy should avoid chloroquine.
Proguanil (Paludrine)

It is taken on a daily basis commencing 4 days before entering malarial zone, continue while in the malarial zone and 4 weeks after leaving malaria zone.

Side Effects associated with Proguanil:

• Unpleasant taste
• Abdominal discomfort, nausea
• Mouth ulcer 

(E) Avoid dangerous sports & activities


Please also see useful link:-                                                                                                                                                            Department of Foreign Affairs travel advice section                                          Centers for disease control and prevention(US)                                             World Health Organisation                                                                                                                                               

For more information or to book an appointment for a travel vaccination, contact us today on (01) 873 59 59.

For more useful Telephone numbers:-   

Department of Foreign Affairs:                                                      00353 1 4780 822

Health Service Executive:                                                             1850 241 850

Passport Office

Dublin:                                                                                            01 6711 633         or Locall  1890 426 888

Cork:                                                                                               021 4944 700       or Locall: 1890 426 900


International Reverse Charge Calls Ireland

(Direct Freephone):                                                                        1800 404 100

Bank of Ireland 24hr Lost / Stolen Credit Cards:                             00353 567 757 007

AIB 24hr Lost/Stolen Credit Cards                                                  00353 1 6685 500

Permanent TSB 24hr Lost/Stolen Credit Cards                              00353 1 2157 333

International Emergency Number:                                                  112/999

VHI:                                                                                                 00353 567 753 200

Hibernian Aviva                                                                               00353 818 200 016

(Alternative Number)                                                                       00353 1 619 3620

Quinn Healthcare                                                                            1890 700 890


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Jervis Medical Centre
(Opposite Cineworld Cinema)
Corner of Jervis / Parnell Street. Dublin 1
City Centre.

Contact Jervis Medical Centre Dublin (01) 873 59 59