By Leah Salvin
Off to the 2018 FIFA World Cup? Make sure your travel vaccinations are up-to-date.
England fans look away now. According to Gracenote, a sports data company, England have a 4% chance of replicating the success of 1966 and winning the 2018 FIFA World Cup.1 A lot has changed since then. Bobby Moore was paid just £7 a week to play for his club West Ham Utd in the 60’s, compare that to the average weekly wage for a Premier League football player today, £50,000.2 But one thing that will remain consistent is the professional service and affordable prices at our Hub pharmacy travel clinics.
Over 1.5 million tourists are set to arrive in Russia for the greatest spectacle in the footballing world, the 2018 FIFA World Cup. Increased international travel coupled with mass movement can facilitate the spread of disease and illness, especially in those individuals who are not immune.
According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), Europe saw a four-fold increase in measles cases this past year, with one in four European countries being affected by large measles outbreaks (100 or more cases).3 Measles is a highly infectious viral infection of the respiratory tract. 28 of the 32 participating nations at this year’s 2018 FIFA World Cup have reported measles cases this year.4
Public Health England advises those travelling to Europe ensure that they have had two doses of the measles, mumps and rubella vaccine (MMR) in their lifetime.5 Immunity to MMR develops after two weeks, it is therefore recommended to get vaccinated at least two weeks prior to travelling.
When travelling abroad to any country, it is especially important that travellers are up-to-date with routine vaccination courses and boosters as recommended in the UK. These include the MMR vaccine and also the diphtheria-tetanus-polio vaccine.
Hepatitis A is a virally transmitted infection that can occur via contaminated food and water, as well as by contact with an infected person. All travellers are advised to take particular care with food, water and hygiene. Two doses of the Hepatitis A vaccine should be administered, separated by 6-12 months, thus giving long-term protection against the disease.
Russia is also considered as ‘moderate risk’ for humans contacting rabies according to the WHO.6 Rabies is a viral infection which can be transmitted from the saliva of animals. Travellers are advised to avoid contact with all animals. If you are bitten or scratched by any animal, wash the wound and seek medical attention. A full course of three vaccines is administered and should be commenced at least one month prior to travelling. For shorter trips, like attending the World Cup, awareness of rabies risk and bite avoidance measures may be all that is required.
Check the Russia Country Information page on the TravelHealthPro website for current vaccine and health advice. Anyone travelling with complex medical conditions or travelling for longer duration’s should visit one of our Travel Clinics for advice and guidance on other vaccinations which may be required.
Aside from the football fever, this past month I have had consultations and offered vaccines to patients visiting a whole host of exotic destinations; Dubai, Zambia, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Malaysia, and India amongst the many other countries frequented by my patients this month. As always, wherever you may be travelling to, ensure that you have comprehensive travel insurance before travelling.
Utilise our online consultation ETool for free by entering your travel itinerary and check what protection is required for your destinations. At the Hub pharmacy, our trained pharmacists offer expert advice and our informal consultations are also free. We can also provide tailored recommendations and vaccinations based on which countries you are visiting.
Our pharmacists are available 7 days a week until 10pm in most of our locations so stop by at any time for an informal consultation about your travel requirements.