Polio vaccination entry and exit requirements Briefing 25 May 2014 Proof of polio vaccination may be required when departing from some countries In May 2014, the World Health Organization declared the international spread of wild polio virus to be a Public 1 Health Emergency of International Concern (PHEIC) . They recommended that: Cameroon, Pakistan and the Syrian Arab Republic (countries infected and currently exporting the virus) ensure all residents, as well as travellers who have stayed in-country for 4 weeks or more, have a dose of oral poliovirus vaccine (OPV) or inactivated poliovirus vaccine (IPV) at least 4 weeks (or if unable, at least by the time of departure) and no more than12 months prior to travelling abroad. Proof of vaccination should be documented on the International Certificate of Vaccination or Prophylaxis Afghanistan, Equatorial Guinea, Ethiopia, Iraq, Israel, Nigeria and Somalia (countries infected but not currently exporting the virus) should “encourage” residents, as well as travellers who have stayed in-country for 4 weeks or more, to have a dose of OPV or IPV at least 4 weeks (or if unable, at least by the time of departure) and no more than 12 months prior to travelling abroad. Some form of documentation of the vaccination should be provided to the traveller. Pakistan has announced that the requirement comes into effect from June 1. Polio vaccination stations are being established at international airports, seaports and land borders. For other affected countries, it is uncertain at this time how these measures will be carried out or enforced. International SOS is monitoring the situation. India also requires its residents who are travelling from India to Afghanistan, Ethiopia, Kenya, Nigeria, Pakistan, Somalia and Syria, to receive a dose of OPV at least 4 weeks prior to the date of travel. It is NOT mandatory for foreign nationals residing in India to receive vaccination with OPV before travelling to these countries. Proof of polio vaccination is required for some or all travellers arriving in the following countries: Brunei: travellers from polio-endemic countries (i.e. Afghanistan, Nigeria, Pakistan). No further details on the requirement at this time. Georgia: travellers from Afghanistan, Pakistan, Nigeria and Syria, are required to carry their official polio vaccination records showing a completed polio vaccination series India: resident national travellers from Afghanistan, Nigeria, Pakistan, Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia, and the Syrian Arab Republic are required to have a dose of oral polio vaccination at least four weeks prior to arrival. Iraq: all travellers. No further details on the requirement at this time. Saudi Arabia: all Hajj and Umra pilgrims Syria: oral polio vaccination for travellers from Afghanistan, Nigeria and Pakistan. Travellers who are required to show proof of vaccination are advised to carry their official polio vaccination records in their hand luggage. Note that in addition to requirements, International SOS recommends that travellers to any destination ensure they have received a primary series of polio vaccination, and those travelling to countries where polio is in 1 World Health Organization statement on the meeting of the International Health Regulations Emergency Committee concerning the international spread of wild poliovirus 5 May 2014 http://www.who.int/mediacentre/news/statements/2014/polio20140505/en/ Polio Vaccination Entry and Exit Requirements Briefing 25 May 2014 © 2014 AEA International Holdings Pte. Ltd. All rights reserved. Unauthorized copy or distribution prohibited. Polio vaccination entry and exit requirements Briefing 25 May 2014 circulation also have received a booster. Please see the relevant International SOS country guide for further details. What will happen if I don’t have my vaccination record when I leave / arrive? It is unknown at this stage what will potentially happen to travellers who fail to meet the requirements. There is a possibility that they may be denied entry, or offered vaccination. What do I need to show? Certain locations require the International Certificate of Vaccination or Prophylaxis. Other locations will accept the International Certificate of Vaccination or Prophylaxis as well as any official vaccination record that has the details of the vaccinations received, the date of vaccination, as well as the health provider’s signature, stamp and contact details. What is polio vaccination? There are two types of vaccination that prevent polio. Oral polio vaccine (OPV) contains a live, weakened virus and is taken by mouth. Inactivated polio vaccine (IPV) contains killed (dead) virus and is given as an injection. IPV is generally only used in countries where polio has been eliminated. OPV is used for mass vaccination campaigns in countries where polio is still a threat. OPV is also used during outbreak situations, even in countries where inactivated vaccine is otherwise routine. Several doses of vaccination are required to achieve immunity. What is a completed polio vaccination series? Each country has its own polio immunization schedule. Children are generally immunised with four or five doses of vaccine from soon after birth to age six, or sometimes at adolescence. People who only commence vaccination when they have reached adolescence or adulthood generally only get three doses of vaccine. Booster doses are recommended for people who live or travel to areas where polio is still circulating. For more information, see the article “Polio vaccination” in the Disease & Prevention dropdown on the International SOS Country Guides www.internationalsos.com (log in required) Disclaimer This information has been developed for educational purposes only. It is not a substitute for professional medical advice. Should you have questions or concerns about any topic described here, please consult your healthcare professional. Polio Vaccination Entry and Exit Requirements Briefing 25 May 2014 © 2014 AEA International Holdings Pte. Ltd. All rights reserved. Unauthorized copy or distribution prohibited.
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