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Planning Retirement Online

Prepare your health
for the holiday season

April 2017

couple packed for holiday

Summer is coming and thoughts often turn to travel!

But as we get older we know health becomes an important consideration as we can be more vulnerable to sickness and problems while travelling.

This means we need to check what is going on in the countries we want to visit and make sure we have the right vaccinations and travel health advice.

A useful initial place to look at is the National Health’s own Fit for Travel site. This gives an updated list for pretty well every country of the health risks and also details specific hazards such as bilharzias, a parasitic infection that humans can get from contact with fresh water in certain locations.  But be careful how much you read as it could put you off travel forever!!

Travel Health Pro is another useful source of information  and gives the latest risks from any outbreaks or diseases that are a threat plus indicate the appropriate vaccinations needed before a visit.

But while you can go on line to find out about the health risks and the vaccinations you might need, you still will need to take physical action to obtain the vaccinations...and in good time. Some vaccinations need to be given in a sequence of doses or require time to kick in, so always ensure you sort out your health requirements quite a few weeks  or even months before the start of your trip.

While your own doctor is always a good port of call, they may not have the specific vaccinations you need available immeidately in the surgery and sometimes it can make sense to go to a travel health specialist who keeps totally up to date with the health risks of various countries and can also provide the vaccinations required.

Some top pharmacies like Boots offer travel vaccination advice and certain branches can also do the vaccinations for you.

There are also a range of specialist private travel clinics across the country. The largest group in the UK is run by MASTA, standing for the Medical Advisory Service for Travellers Abroad.  They are well established with over 30 years experience and constantly monitor disease situations and outbreaks across the world.  With established partnerships with certain pharmacies, BUPA, STA Travel and Flight Centre, and clinics based in NHS and Occupational Health establishments, they really are easily accessible across the UK.

Most customers like to visit them to receive a face to face consultation, but they can also talk through requirements for specific trips on the phone.  Then you can arrange the vaccinations or anti-malarials you might need.

There is also a range of other private travel clinics across the country such as  the London Travel Clinic which has 8 clinics across the capital and offers evening and weekend appointments.

Certain travel companies can also offer health advice. STA Travel offers a full range of professional travel services plus has health clinics in its stores in London , LiverpoolLeedsBristol and Southampton.

They offer professional medical staff and also late appointments for people who are running out of time to get all their vaccinations completed.

Once aspect, apart from ensuring you have your health covered, is to consider the cost of the vaccinations. If you are visiting some unusual or high risk regions, then the cost of all the vaccinations you need can become quite a factor in the overall cost.

STA, who try and keep their prices as low as possible, say their current prices are in the region of the following but of course prices can vary everywhere  as supplies become more or less available.


Price per dose

Cholera (oral, price for full course)


Combined Diptheria, Tetanus and Polio


Combined Hepatitis A and B*


Combined Hepatitis A and Typhoid


Hepatitis A*


Hepatitis B*


Japanese Encephalitis*


Meningitis ACWY - Menveo (conjugate)




Tick Encephalitis*




Typhoid (Oral, price for full course)


Yellow Fever £62.00

Malaria tablets (RRP)  

Chloroquine 20 tablets


Doxycycline 50 tablets


Mefloquine (Larium) 8 tablets


Malarone 12 tablets


Paludrine/Avloclor 98/14 tablets


Proguanil/Avtovaquone 12 tablets






Taking steps to keep as health as you can will ensure you can enjoy the best holiday possible, which is of course what everyone is hoping for.

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