The recent history of Sierra Leone is marred by more than a decade of violent war and the “blood diamond” scandal. But the conflict now belongs to the past and the small West African nation is ready to show its treasures to the rest of the world. And what treasures! Sierra Leone is blessed with absolutely stunning white sand beaches, dense green rain forests and lovely small islands. The country is home to a rich wildlife and the rare African Manatee or the shy endangered Pygmy Hippopotamus can be encountered here. Sierra Leone’s wounds have healed and the country now deserves a bright future.
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.
SIERRA LEONE – RECOMMENDED VACCINES
|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.
It is important to note that the vaccine should be administered at least 10 days prior to your departure.
For further information, please consult with the World Health Organization (WHO) website:
|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.
Otherwise, one booster dose at the age of 50*.
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.|
|Cholera||For humanitarian workers and health care providers.|
|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|
|African Tick Bite Fever||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.|
|Ebola||Wash your hands frequently. Avoid contact with biological fluids from someone who is infected. Don’t touch any wild animal.|
|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.|
|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.|
|Antimalarials Recommended||Malarone, Doxycycline or Mefloquine|
|Antibiotics Traveler’s Diarrhea||Azithromycin or Suprax|
Access to health care in Sierra Leone remains very difficult. Medical care is extremely limited in Freetown, the capital city, and non existent in rural areas. Be aware that the medical equipment in public hospitals is not well sterilized. If you require medical assistance while traveling in Sierra Leone, you can go to the Princess Christian Memorial Hospital in the capital city. But don’t expect good quality care. In the event of serious complications or injury, an air evacuation to another country is indispensable.
There are no ambulance services in Sierra Leone. If you require immediate medical assistance in Sierra Leone, you can go to the emergency hospital located in Goderich, near Freetown, with a private car. But it is sometimes hardly accessible, especially during the rainy season, as the road leading to this medical establishment is in very bad condition.
Pharmaceutical products are very difficult to access in Sierra Leone. Pharmacies are few in the main cities and non existent elsewhere. They are not well stocked. It is strongly advised that you bring your own medical supplies in sufficient quantities when traveling to Sierra Leone.
Be vigilant in border areas. The area bordering Liberia has been highly unstable in the past. There is a high level of trans-border military, militia and criminal activity in the border area with Guinea.
In case of emergency, dial:
- police: 112
- medical assistance: 999
- firefighters: 033 / 300 / 301