Health tips for traveling to Vietnam
Are you planning to travel to Vietnam? We are pleased to present you this article on the health situation and vaccines as well as the necessary precautionary measures, hoping that your trip to Vietnam will be fully successful.

1. Before leaving for Vietnam
Before leaving, you can seek advice from your doctor or from an international vaccination center in your country. Some sources of information:

- French yellow fever vaccination centers and health advice

- “Travel advice” from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

- Medical Information Committee of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (CIMED). Administrative or practical information:

- House of French Abroad:

- Francophone Union of Belgians Abroad: Or, you can consult the website of the Vietnamese Embassy and Consulate at home.


2. Vaccines recommended in Vietnam
- HEPATITIS A (Vietnam vaccine): recommended before leaving for a trip to Laos or Cambodia.

- HEPATITIS B (Vietnam vaccine): Anyone can benefit from this vaccine as long as they are at least two years old. It is one of the 3 vaccines recommended for Cambodia, although it is not mandatory

- DT POLIO (Vietnam vaccine), if your vaccination is more than 10 years old, do not forget to give a booster before leaving.

- Japanese encephalitis: Likewise, if you plan to travel to a rural area during the rainy season in Vietnam (see article: When to go to Vietnam?), We recommend that you get vaccinated against Japanese encephalitis. No need to take this vaccine if you only travel to major Vietnamese cities. (Complementary Vietnam vaccines). The vaccines to do in addition for visits outside the main cities:

- Typhoid fever, transmitted by water and food contaminated with feces, hence special attention to drinks and washing of fruits and vegetables. Always wash your hands ++++. Vaccine valid for 3 years, to be taken 1 month before departure.

- Yellow fever or anti-yellow fever: transmitted by mosquitoes. Be careful to get vaccinated against yellow fever if you have to spend a stay in off-the-beaten-track regions of Vietnam with nights at a local's home or in the jungle, for example, where hygienic conditions are poor. If you are only staying in large cities such as Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh, Hue, or Hoi An, you will not need the vaccine.

3. Prevention of digestive infections
To travel to a foreign country, travelers must gradually get used to new lifestyles, including diet.

Food: You are advised to consume freshly cooked foods and avoid cold meats, pastries or dairy products. For vegetables, they should be washed with clean boiled water preferably. As for the fruits, it is better to peel them for more security.

Drinks: It is best to drink pre-boiled water or that in capped bottles, otherwise you have to chemically process or filter it. It is not advisable to take ice cubes that you do not know where they come from.

Hands: always wash them before eating (to reduce the risk of infection)


4. Prevention of malaria
Vietnamese malaria, admittedly formidable, is present only in small areas: there is no malaria in the big cities, nor in the tourist coastal towns, nor in the rice paddy plains. It is therefore only very exceptionally that the traveler will be confronted with the problem of malaria.

If you are staying in so-called “risky” areas, first of all, your doctor must prescribe the most suitable medication (destination, type of stay, accommodation, your state of health, etc.) and that you follow up. seriously these indications (type of medication, start date as well as end date, pace, etc.). In addition, it should also be noted that mosquitoes bite, especially at night, and can transmit the disease. So, it is advisable to sleep under an insecticide-treated mosquito net or in an air-conditioned and insect-controlled room or to use mosquito repellents on the exposed parts of the body and to spray your clothes with an insecticide.

Note: The risk of malaria is very minimal but still possible. If you have any suspicions of malaria (sawtooth fever, pain, possibly other symptoms) during your trip or even in the days following your return, consult a doctor immediately (within 12 hours).


5. Other preventive measures
- Personal hygiene
To avoid infectious skin problems, such as mycosis, for example, you need to have rigorous personal hygiene. Always dry the skin.

- Clothes
Wear loose clothing, clean, ventilated, adapted to the climate, in cotton, linen rather than synthetic.

- Insects
The essential precaution is the prevention of malaria (see above). During the day, to avoid the inconvenience caused by insect bites, and to reduce the risk of inoculations from other diseases (dengue, Japanese encephalitis, etc.), you should cover your arms and legs especially in the evening, use repellents and insecticides on clothing.

- Security
A trip without pitfalls is always ideal. For traffic and movement, one must be very careful to avoid road accidents which represent the major risk in all countries.

Gender: By this route, diseases like hepatitis B virus, AIDS and many others can be transmitted. So, it is better to protect yourself or to abstain during your stay.

Security: Please consult the website: “Travel advice” of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Animals: During the visits, you are advised to stay away from birds, live poultry (to avoid any risk of avian flu), or dogs, even if they appear healthy (to avoid the risk of rage).

Poisonous substances
Currently, many tourists tend to trek and therefore put themselves in more "risky" situations, which is why it should be noted that in the jungle, you can meet snakes and spiders ... uncleared forest, brush or dark terrain at night is not recommended. In case you are bitten or stung, you must clean the wound and go to a medical center as soon as possible.

Avian influenza: To date, there have been no cases of human-to-human transmission of avian influenza (apart from a few suspected cases in this type of transmission). It is recommended that you avoid poultry farms and live poultry markets in places where this virus has been (or is still rife).

6. Other tips
Before departure, you must take care of your good body condition and even dental health.

Provide one or two pairs of emergency glasses if you wear glasses.

If you are having medication: take any medications you will need for a short stay (take your prescription). For a long stay, your doctor or the vaccination center will give you information on local health or pharmaceutical resources.

Leave with your Health Assistance and Medical Insurance contracts for a good, well-insured trip.


7. Return from travel
On your return from your trip, for any health problem (fever, skin lesions, or digestive problems, etc.) in the days or weeks that follow, consult your doctor without hesitation, reminding him of your trip.

Have a nice trip to Vietnam!

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