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Vaccinations for India

Vaccinations for India

While there are no compulsory vaccinations for travelling to India, it is essential that travellers recognise that there is a higher risk to their health while travelling within India. These risks are mainly associated with food and water borne diseases but conditions such as rabies, tuberculosis and cholera which are often also present in many regions.

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Vaccinations for India

20:13 Wed 29th May, 2024

Malaria There is a risk of malaria in the states of Assam and Orissa; the districts of East Godavari, Srikakulam, Vishakhapatnam and Vizianagaram in the state of Andhra Pradesh; and the districts of Balaghat, Dindori, Mandla and Seoni in the state of Madhya Pradesh

All Travellers

Poliomyelitis

Poliomyelitis is a viral disease transmitted through oral/faecal contamination and the respiratory route. The vaccine is combined with cover against Tetanus and Diphtheria. Most travellers who have completed their primary course of childhood vaccines will only require a single booster dose to provide cover. Once completed it is expected that cover should last for 10 years.

Find out more about Poliomyelitis

Tetanus

Tetanus is contracted through contaminated cuts, bites and breaks in the skin. The vaccination provides cover for approximately 10 years in the majority of patients. It is frequently combined with cover against other diseases such as Poliomyelitis, Diphtheria and/or Pertussis.

Find out more about Tetanus

Hepatitis A

Hepatitis A is a common disease in many of the hotter regions of the world and usually contracted through contaminated food and water. Cover against Hepatitis A can be given alone or combined with protection against Hepatitis B. Once completed, the Hepatitis A vaccination (given on two occasions 6 to 12 months apart) provides cover for approximately 25 years in the majority of patients.

Find out more about Hepatitis A

Typhoid

Typhoid is a bacterial disease contracted through contaminated food and water. Once completed, the Typhoid vaccination given on one occasion provides cover for between 2 to 3 years in the majority of patients

Find out more about Typhoid

Optional

Hepatitis B

Hepatitis B is a viral disease which is usually transmitted in a very similar fashion to HIV/AIDS through contact with infected body fluids (eg blood exposure and sexually). This vaccine can be combined with cover against Hepatitis A. The standard schedule for Hepatitis B is to administer the vaccine on days 0, 28 and 180. A more rapid schedule can be used in cases where cover is needed more urgently and this is administered on days 0, 7, 21 to 28 and also 365. Following either course (and not before completion) a blood test can be taken to confirm sufficient antibody protection. Where the correct level of antibodies are showing (>10iu) the vaccination is recognised to provide cover for life.

Find out more about Hepatitis B

Rabies

Rabies is a viral disease which is usually transmitted through the bite, the lick or the scratch of any infected warm blooded animal. As per the current WHO guidance, the vaccine is usually administered on days 0 and between 7 and 28. Once a course is completed, the vaccination provides life long ‘immune memory’ in the majority of patients BUT after any possible exposure the individual always needs further vaccination to boost antibody production

Find out more about Rabies

Meningococcal Meningitis

Meningococcal Meningitis is a bacterial disease which is usually transmitted through the respiratory route. The vaccine is given on one occasion and provides cover against four of the main forms of this disease. Once a course is completed the vaccination provides for over 10 years in the majority of patients.

Find out more about Meningococcal Meningitis

Cholera

Cholera / E coli are both food / water borne diseases. This oral vaccine is given on two occasions between 1 to 6 weeks apart before travel. The second dose (frequently given one week after the initial one) should be administered 7 days before potential exposure. Once completed the cover against Cholera is expected to be for about 2 years. The cover against E coli is shorter and thought to be effective for between 3 to 4 months. In travellers who have completed an initial primary course within the past 2 years a single further dose is sufficient to maintain this cover.

Find out more about Cholera

Japanese Encephalitis

Japanese Encephalitis is a viral disease transmitted through the bite of an infected mosquito. The Ixiaro vaccine is given on two occasions one month apart with a third dose at 12 months. Once completed the vaccine is thought to provide cover for between 2 to 3 years but possibly longer.

Find out more about Japanese Encephalitis

Most standard tourists travelling to India should start their vaccines four to six weeks before they leave home. However, those planning a longer visit, or where a planned trip is likely to bring them to more rural parts of India, should attend earlier to ensure that there is sufficient time to complete the vaccination courses.

For most Irish travellers safety and security while in India will not be a major concern. However, the experience of road travel through any of the major cities is something many tourists will not forget. Taking care on Indian roads is a constantly essential activity. As in many other countries travelling alone or late at night is unwise.

India is a beautiful country and offers many opportunities for both the Irish tourist and the business traveller.

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