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When planning a trip to a foreign country, it is important to consider your health, safety and well-being and cover yourself against any disease. There are a number of vaccines for Thailand that are recommended to ensure you are protected and get the best out of your trip.
It’s recommended that travellers to Thailand have inoculations for Hepatitis A and Typhoid at a minimum and also Hepatitis B, Japanese encephalitis or Rabies depending on which regions they’re visiting and the activities they are planning to do.
If your travel plans involve taking a trip to remote areas away from the usual tourist areas, then Malaria prevention tablets may be recommended. However, these are unnecessary for popular tourist hubs like Bangkok, Chiang Mai, Phuket or Koh Samui. Be aware of mosquitos in general as they can carry Dengue fever, especially common during the wet season.
If you are hoping to visit Thailand, there are certain routine vaccinations and key immunizations you are required to have up to date to travel safely. These include:
Hepatitis A is an inflammation of the liver that causes mild to severe symptoms. This virus can be caught when an unvaccinated person ingests the feces of an infected person through contaminated food.
People contracting hepatitis may experience debilitating symptoms. In rare cases, patients may also experience acute liver failure.
Hepatitis B is a vaccine-preventable liver disease that is spread when the body fluids from a person infected with the virus enter the body of an unvaccinated person. This can happen through sexual contact or sharing needles to inject drugs.
Yellow fever transmission is more common in tropical and subtropical areas. The virus is one of the various mosquito-borne diseases that can be prevented through routine vaccinations.
Most travellers visiting major cities are advised to use insect repellent or bug spray, wear proper clothing, and stay in a room with air conditioning to avoid mosquito bites.
Typhoid fever and paratyphoid fever are caused by similar bacterias commonly found in rural areas and countries with poor sanitation.
This disease is typically spread when a person carrying disease uses the bathroom and does not wash their hands. This can lead to them contaminating anything they touch, including food and beverages.
People visiting rural areas are advised to be more cautious about the food they eat or the drinks they receive.
Travellers aged 6 and older can take an oral vaccine at least one week before travel to prevent an increased risk of typhoid fever.
Rabies is a deadly disease that is spread through animal bites or scratches. While rabies can mostly be found in wild animals, in many other places around the world, bites from dogs can also be a source of rabies infections in people. These places include Thailand’s capital city and other urban areas in the country.
People who are bitten by rabid animals are advised to seek medical treatment immediately. Health care providers are available in clinics in rural areas of Thailand. However, they may only be able to speak Thai, the country’s official language.
Malaria is a disease caused by a parasite spread through mosquito bites. This illness can cause high fevers, chills, and flu0like illnesses in people who are infected. Without treatment, malaria can be fatal.
You can protect yourself from malaria by taking travel medicine and preventing mosquito bites. As of November 2021, there has been no malaria vaccine authorized by health agencies.
To protect yourself from malaria infection, health officers advise covering exposed skin by wearing long-sleeved shirts, long pants and hats. It is also recommended to sleep in air-conditioned rooms or use bed nets if the area is exposed to the outdoors.
Mosquito-borne diseases are typically present throughout the country, especially northern regions.
If your travel plans taking a trip to remote areas away from the usual tourist areas then Malaria prevention tablets may be recommended. However, these are unnecessary for popular tourist hubs like Bangkok, Chiang Mai, Phuket or Koh Samui. Be aware of mosquitos in general as they can carry Dengue fever, especially common during the wet season.
Beginning Nov. 1, all foreign tourists—including medical tourists—arriving in Thailand must meet several conditions to gain permission to fly into the country.
According to the Bureau of Risk Communication and Health Behavior Promotion of the Disease Control Department, the foreign tourist must:
Countries deemed “low risk” by the Thai government as of Oct. 27 include Australia, Canada, China, France, Germany, Japan, New Zealand, Singapore, South Korea, the UK, the US and Hong Kong. Travellers who have resided in one of 46 countries and territories included in the list will be allowed to enter and stay in Khao Yai National Park and Thailand for at least 21 days to enter without quarantine.
The full list of approved countries can be found on the Thailand Ministry of Foreign Affairs website.
Travellers who are fully vaccinated but are from a high-risk country are required to stay in SHA+hotels for a week in a “sandbox area.” This includes 17 provinces across Thailand, such as Phuket, Bangkok, Chiang Mai, and Krabi.
Travellers who have not been fully vaccinated arriving in Bangkok are required to quarantine in an approved hotel room for 10 days. A full list of participating hotels and resorts can be found on this https://asq.locanation.com/ . Travellers can also make a booking and pay for their stay through the online server.
Children aged 11 and under who are travelling with their parents are not required to show proof of vaccination. However, children aged 12 and older would be asked to show a vaccine certificate and medical insurance upon arrival.
International travellers would need to apply for the Thailand Pass, which may take up to 7 days to process. Once the pass is approved, the traveller can enter the country through six international airports, including Chiang Mai, Phuket, Samui, U-Tapao, and Suvarnabhumi airport. Travellers entering the country via charter flights may enter through Buri Ram airport.
Travellers who refuse to follow the protocols set by the government of the Kingdom of Thailand will have their access denied.
When arranging your shots for Thailand, it’s important to make sure you leave enough time for your body to adjust and the vaccines have time to start working. It is recommended have your vaccinations about 4 to 6 weeks before you travel.
The World Health Organisation recommends the following inoculations and injections for Thailand: Hepatitis A and B, Typhoid, Yellow fever, Japanese Encephalitis, Rabies and Tetanus. Check with your local travel clinic for updates.
There are no inoculations required for Thailand. If you’re travelling from the US, Britain, or Australia, there are usually no compulsory vaccinations required for Thailand.
Thailand vaccinations recommended are Hepatitis A, Hepatitis B, Typhoid, Yellow fever, Japanese encephalitis, Rabies and Tetanus. This will also apply for travel to Bangkok. The risk in most cities in Thailand is classed as low to no risk for malaria.
Thailand travel vaccinations that you get in general will also cover you for Phuket. These include Hepatitis A, Hepatitis B, Typhoid, Yellow fever, Japanese Encephalitis, Rabies and Tetanus.
Malaria prevention tablets may be recommended to travel certain parts of Thailand that are more remote areas away from the usual tourist areas.
Dengue is a viral infection transmitted by the bite of an infected mosquito characterised by the onset of sudden high fever, severe headache, pain behind the eyes, and pain in muscles and joints. Dengue fever risk is present in both urban and rural areas in Thailand, but with a higher risk in the northeast of the country during the monsoon from April to December. Make sure you use mosquito repellent to protect you from contracting this disease.
Food and water in Thailand can pose some health risks that could lead to gastrointestinal upsets. To be safe, avoid drinking the tap water; it’s not treated and thus unsafe to consume. Choose bottled water instead. Avoid eating food that’s been sitting around for a while.
The price of travel vaccines can vary depending on the medical provider and the type of vaccine. Prices can range for example, from AUD 25 for the Hepatitis B vaccine, up to AUD 285 for the Japanese Encephalitis vaccination.
Check with your doctor or travel clinic for advice. It depends on where you are going and for how long. Some people prefer to be safe than sorry and cover themselves for their exposure to a new climate and environment, foods and bacteria regardless of their length of stay. Being vaccinated, especially when you plan to visit popular tourist attractions, can also protect you from unwanted illnesses that may affect your trip.
Thailand has a national health insurance system, called the Universal Coverage Scheme (UCS) which provides free public healthcare through the Ministry of Public Health to Thai nationals. Expats working in Thailand are covered by the UCS and their contribution to the scheme is deducted from their salary. For travellers visiting Thailand, free healthcare is not available.
Since introducing universal healthcare in 2001, Thailand has made significant steps in developing a healthcare system that has been able to cover 98% of the population with affordable healthcare within a 10-year timeframe. Thailand is recognized worldwide for the quality of its healthcare services, ranking as one of the higher Asian countries for having a better healthcare system behind Taiwan, South Korea and Japan.
Yes, travel immunizations are available at many hospitals throughout Thailand. Queen Saovabha Memorial Institute in Bangkok is a popular choice for travellers with clean and modern facilities, English-speaking doctors and affordable vaccines. Before getting a shot, make sure to discuss your medical history with the health care provider.
Vaccine components change annually to ensure that the current shots protect the recipient from the three strains of flu. Learn more about your flu vaccine options by contacting your local health care provider.
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