"Whether you’re on vacation or traveling for business, it is important to take the appropriate health precautions before leaving the country," says Edward Chapnick MD, Director of the Travel Medicine Service and the Division of Infectious Diseases at Maimonides.
For instance, malaria, which is transmitted by mosquitoes, remains a threat in Africa, certain parts of Asia, and the Amazon region. Travelers to these areas are generally given a prescription for medication that will reduce the chances of contracting the disease.
In cases where vaccines are not needed, travelers should know whether they will be in areas with potentially unsafe food and water. They might be advised to use iodine tablets in drinking water, avoid using ice in their beverages, peel raw fruit before eating it, and leave swimming in lakes or rivers off their itinerary.
The Maimonides Travel Medicine Service – which is overseen and staffed entirely by infectious disease physicians – offers comprehensive pre-trip medical care, reducing the likelihood that serious illness will occur while abroad.The services offered include:
Pre-travel examinations – Travelers who want a clean bill of health before their trip can come in for a physical exam.
Immunizations – Patients receive all necessary vaccines, including tetanus, hepatitis A, yellow fever, polio and typhoid. Vaccination certificates are available if the patient is traveling to a country that requires them.
Country-specific medical information
– All patients receive a package of relevant health advice for their destination – everything from information on outbreaks of concern for international travelers, to how to avoid illness from food or water. The Travel Medicine staff also can address any questions or concerns patients may have about their journey. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issues worldwide guidelines of the immunizations required, as well as, health warnings on a country-by-country basis (http://wwwn.cdc.gov/travel/default.aspx
Post-trip care – In the event that someone does become sick during a trip, Maimonides infectious disease specialists can diagnose and treat all types of illnesses that are common abroad.
The Maimonides Travel Medicine Service, sees patients by appointment and evening appointments are available.