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Travel Vaccinations & Advice for United Kingdom

The United Kingdom, officially known as The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, is one of the most popular travel destinations in the world. Many travellers tend to remain in London that is understandable - it is a great city! Nevertheless, backpacking around England is one of the highlights for travellers.

There are beautiful mountains, rolling hills and Tudor cities such as Chester. The countryside has natural beauty and fascinating estates.

And, if you’re planning to experience all this by visiting the United Kingdom, you will have a lot to see. Scotland, England, Northern Island, and Wales are some of the most popular destinations to explore.

The UK is yours to explore! But, make sure that you fulfil all the eligibility criteria before kick-starting your journey. One such formality is Travel Vaccination.

Required Vaccinations for UK

There are some vaccines that are recommended for the United Kingdom. The World Health Organisation (WHO) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommend some vaccines before travelling to the UK. Vaccines are recommended for ailments such as:

  • Hepatitis A
  • Hepatitis B
  • Meningitis
  • Rabies
  • Mumps and Rubella (MMR)
  • Measles
  • Tdap (tetanus, diphtheria, and pertussis)
  • Shingles
  • Chickenpox
  • Polio
  • Influenza
  • Pneumonia

The following table shows the recommended travel vaccinations for the UK:

Vaccine

Details

How the disease spreads?

Hepatitis A

Most of the travellers should use this

Water and contaminated food, close contact with an infected person

Hepatitis B

accelerated schedule available

Blood and body fluids

Meningitis

 

Direct contact/airborne

anyone who is unvaccinated with a higher risk, speciality the students

Rabies

 

Especially for long-term travellers and those who come in contact with animal the most

Saliva of an infected animal

Mumps and Rubella (MMR)

 

Given to anyone who born after 1957 or unvaccinated

Various vectors

tetanus, diphtheria and pertussis

Adult booster of pertussis  is required

Wounds & Airborne

Shingles

 

Anyone even if you have had Shingles

Direct contact

Chickenpox

 

Those who are unvaccinated and didn’t suffer earlier

Direct contact/airborne

Polio

 

Routine vaccination for most of the travel itineraries

Water and food

Influenza

 

Components change annually

Airborne

Pneumonia

 

Two vaccinations are given. All 65+ or with an impaired immune system should receive both vaccinations

Airborne

How far in Advance you should Get Vaccinated before Travelling?

It is essential to get vaccinated at least 8 weeks prior to the exact travel dates. This will allow the vaccines to work properly on your body and develop immunity to prevent diseases. Some vaccines need time to allow your body to develop immunity. This way you can ensure enough time to receive the complete dose of vaccination and stay fit throughout.

If you’re with a specific medical condition that prevents you from receiving the vaccination, the same will be made as contraindicated by a physical practitioner. Contraindication is a condition, which restrains you from getting a vaccine and allows to travel with other conditions.

Where can I go to Get Travel Vaccines?

You can get yourself vaccinated from:

  • Private travel vaccination clinic
  • Pharmacy offering travel healthcare services

Things to Consider

There are certain things to consider while planning to get travel vaccination including:

  • You may be more vulnerable to diseases than others; some vaccines can't be given to people with certain medical conditions
  • Chances are higher for you to come in contact with diseases in a refugee camp or after an outbreak of a natural disaster
  • Physician, nurse or other healthcare workers are more prone to get infected and may require additional vaccinations
  • Diseases spread through animals such as rabies are common

Travellers travelling to countries like northern and central Europe, Australia or North America don’t require any vaccinations. But it's important to be up-to-date with the routine vaccinations available on the NHS while travelling to the UK.

Pregnancy and Breastfeeding Related Tips

Speak to your doctor before having any vaccinations if:

  • you're pregnant
  • you think you might be pregnant
  • you're breastfeeding

Prevention is the Key

 When you can’t avoid a sudden health condition, prevention is the only solution. So,

  • Get vaccinated before travelling
  • Eat and drink safely abroad
  • Keep yourself away from animals
  • Avoid sharing body fluids
  • Avoid using non-sterile medical equipment
  • Reduce the exposure to germs

Stay healthy, travel safe!

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