Afghanistan Travel Vaccines and Advice
The Islamic Republic of Afghanistan is a landlocked country located within South and Central Asia. The recent history of Afghanistan is characterized by the long war against the Taliban. The political situation is getting more stable nowadays, but the country still regularly struggles with violent terrorist attacks and remains unsure. Though Afghanistan is far from being tourist aimed, the extremely adventurous travelers will find in this mountainous country several historical World Heritage sites, stunning landscapes and scenic hikes. However, any person planning to visit Afghanistan should be fully aware of the lack of facilities and the current instability of the country.
HEALTH INFORMATION FOR AFGHANISTAN
We make every effort to ensure that the information posted on our website is up to date-and accurate according to the latest public health recommendations; however, it is impossible for us to make changes on a daily basis.
For the most current travel health recommendations, please call our clinic as make an appointment with one of our travel health professionals.
RECOMMENDED VACCINES FOR AFGHANISTAN
|Hepatitis A||Recommended for all travelers.|
|Hepatitis B||Recommended for all travelers.|
|Causes, Symptoms & Treatment – Typhoid fever||Recommended for all travelers.|
|Tetanus – Diphteria – Pertussis Vaccine||
Tetanus: In exceptional circumstances (eg, stay in a region where access to health care is limited), for a person aged 18 years or older, 1 dose of DT may be given if 5 years or more has elapsed since the last dose.
Pertussis (Whooping Cough): 1 dose is recommended for pregnant women, for every pregnancy, regardless of immunization history and the interval since the last dose (betwen week 26 and 32).
*Only applicable for Quebec.
|Measles – Rubella – Mumps||Two doses recommended for all travelers born after 1970, if not previously given.|
|Flu – Influenza||Seasonal influenza occurs worldwide. The flu season usually runs from November to April in the northern hemisphere, between April and October in the southern hemisphere and year round in the tropics. Influenza (flu) is caused by a virus spread from person to person through coughing and sneezing or by touching infected surfaces. Everyone 6 months and older should get a flu vaccine yearly. Vaccine is recommended 14 days prior to departure.|
|Routine vaccines (dCaT, Polio, Meningococcal, Shingles, Pneumococcal, Hepatitis B, HPV, MMR & Varicella)||Recommended for all travelers|
|Tick-borne Encephalitis||Presence. All travellers should protect themselves against tick bites.|
|Transmission, Symptoms and Prevention – Rabies||For travelers at high risk of animal bites or being involved in activities with bats, dogs and other mammals. Clients who plan to visit remote areas may consider receiving this vaccine. Important to note the pre-exposure rabies vaccine is administered in 2 doses with one week interval between doses. Post-exposure vaccination is always recommended, even for those previously vaccinated.|
|Cholera||Vaccine recommended for persons traveling to an area of active transmission. Most people do not travel to areas of active cholera transmission.|
|Turista – Traveler’s Diarrhea (ETEC)||Talk to your health care professional about the risks and precautionary measures to take, as well as the Dukoral® vaccine. Important to note that the Dukoral vaccine is an oral vaccine given in 2 doses, recommended at least 2 weeks prior to departure.|
|Malaria||Malaria is present in this country. The risk may be region specific. Prophylaxis measures to be discussed with the health care professional.|
|Polio||Polio vaccination is strongly recommended for travel to this region. A polio booster dose as an adult (>18 years old) is strongly recommended to travellers who have previously completed childhood polio vaccination. Proof of vaccination may be required for some travellers.|
|Dengue Fever, Chikungunya and/or Zika||There are many illnesses that are transmitted via mosquito bites and unfortunately we do not have vaccines to protect us against most of them. It is important to inquire with your healthcare professional regarding the specific risks and the different illnesses presently in circulation.|
|The Yellow Fever Vaccine||
A proof of vaccination against yellow fever may be required upon entry in to this country.
Some travellers may not be eligible to receive this vaccine. Please enquire with your health care professional regarding your specific details.
For further information, please consult with the World Health Organization (WHO) website:
RECOMMENDED MEDICATIONS FOR AFGHANISTAN
|Acetazolamide/Dexaméthasone||Recommended to prevent Acute mountain sickness (AMS).|
|Antibiotics Traveler’s Diarrhea||Azithromycin or Suprax|
MEDICAL CARE IN AFGHANISTAN
In Afghanistan, access to medical care remains precarious. In public hospitals, the medical equipment is far below international standards, medicine shortages are frequent, and medical professionals are often corrupt. Private medical clinics can be found in the country, but be aware that some of them don’t even have a governmental permit or trained medical personnel. A few well equipped and correctly organized private clinics are located in Kabul, like the DK-German Medical Diagnostic Center (www.medical-kabul.com) and the Acomet Family Hospital (www.afghancomet.com). They offer basic health care and different medical services, but their cost is prohibitive. These clinics are strengthened by the Doctors Without Borders (MSF) trauma center in Kunduz, in the North of the country, which provides quality surgical care for free. Serious medical issues require an air evacuation.
To call an ambulance in Afghanistan, dial 112. But emergency services are not reliable.
The basic medicines found in Afghanistan mainly come from Iran, Pakistan and India. North American and European drugs are rare. Don’t forget to bring your own medical supplies in sufficient quantities.
In case of emergency, dial:
- police: 119 or 100
- medical assistance: 102
- firefighters: 112