5 Things to Do Before Traveling Internationally

By Haley Bass | 10/02/2016
Traveling abroad provides a sense of adventure, the opportunity to learn about new cultures… and the risk of disease.

Whether you’re traveling overseas for business, pleasure, or humanitarian work, the last thing you want to worry about is getting sick. While most people know that it’s a good idea to get certain vaccines before you travel, vaccines aren’t the only precaution you need to take before you go.

So before you get on that flight, use this international travel health checklist to make sure you’re prepared for a safe and healthy adventure:

1. Meet with a travel health specialist four to six weeks before you travel (Check for Concentra’s locations here)

Visiting a travel health specialist before your trip is the best way to protect your health abroad. You’ll get the medications and vaccines you need to stay safe, and be able to talk with your travel health specialist about any health concerns you may have about your destination (or traveling in general).

2. Get the necessary vaccinations for your destination

Where you’re going has a big impact on the vaccines you’ll need for your trip. Your travel health specialist will be able to tell you if certain countries are experiencing disease outbreaks that require vaccines or extra precautions. They’ll also be able to tell you if the country you’re traveling to requires all travelers to receive certain vaccines before entering the country.

3. Learn about health risks based on your medical history and travel itinerary

What’s happening at your destination? Is there a disease outbreak? Have there been outbreaks in the past? Does the country have a specific policy on vaccines? Does your medical history put you at increased risk of certain illnesses?

Knowing all about your destination and its health risks in advance will help you protect your health abroad. Ask your travel health specialist about any concerns you may have on your destination.

4. Stay up to date with the latest info from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and the World Health Organization (WHO)

Your travel health specialist will be able to give you some of the latest information on your destination, but it’s a good idea to do some research on your own, too. Look up your destination on the CDC’s website to find out more about the health risks where you’re going.

5. Pick up prescriptions that could help prevent travel-related illnesses

You’re at the airport and feeling pretty good about your pre-trip preparations. You met with your travel health specialist, got your vaccinations, and did your research… but wait. You forgot to pick up your prescriptions!

Don’t let this be you. Before you go, make sure to pick up your prescriptions and any over-the-counter medications you may need for your trip.

Concentra is a one-stop-shop for travel health services that help keep you healthy before, during, and after your trip. During your office visit, experienced clinicians will make sure every item on this list is checked off, so you can enjoy a safe and healthy trip.