August 27, 2012

Wayne Medical Center offers health tips for the traveler

WAYNESBORO, Tenn. – Many people may not be aware of the fact that when traveling out of the country, you must receive location-specific vaccinations. It is very important not to wait until the last minute to make arrangements to get your vaccinations according to Dr. Harish Veeramachaneni, a staff physician with Wayne Medical Center (WMC).

“Most vaccines take time to become effective in your body and some vaccines must be given in a series over a period of days or sometimes weeks,” said Dr. Veeramachaneni. “Planning ahead is very important. Immigration officials in some countries may even ask you to produce an immunization certificate to prove you have had certain immunizations before they will allow you to enter their country. Contact a travel clinic at least four to six weeks prior to your travel date.”

Information about which vaccines are required for individual countries can be found at,, or from the MRMC Travel Medicine Clinic, which offers international travelers the necessary health services to ensure their well-being abroad and can help in obtaining the proper vaccinations. The clinic is open from 7 a.m. until 3:30 p.m., Monday through Friday. To learn more or to schedule vaccinations, call 931.540.4279 during clinic hours or visit

Whether it’s the excitement of a family vacation, the anticipation of a church mission trip or the preparation required for an important business conference, it is not uncommon to overlook another important factor when preparing to travel. WMC recommends planning ahead for illnesses, injuries or other medical issues before leaving home whether on a short trip or out of the country.

Travelers are responsible for hospital and other medical expenses incurred during a trip. Check your health insurance plan to see if it covers your health needs abroad or consider purchasing additional health insurance if it does not. Medical evacuation insurance can cover the cost of transportation to another part of the country or outside the country if you are seriously ill or injured. Even if you do have insurance, be prepared to pay out-of-pocket at the time you receive medical services while traveling.

The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) suggests it is a good idea to know the signs and symptoms of illness before starting on your trip in order to be prepared to take quick action if you come down with something while traveling and to check with your doctor before traveling if you have any signs while still at home. The CDC also warns that airplane travel, particularly long flights, may increase your risk for blood clots. This is especially true if you have had recent surgery, are pregnant or taking birth control pills or are undergoing hormone replacement.

To be sure your trip won’t end before it starts contact a travel clinic and make arrangements to get the correct vaccinations at least four to six weeks prior to travel. Information about which vaccines are required for individual countries can be found at or at