Vaccinations for South Africa

Health Risks Disclaimer

The following information is intended as a guide only and is not intended to replace professional medical advice.

We, at Sonic HealthPlus, trading as Travelvax and our related companies, cannot guarantee that the following information is complete, up-to-date, accurate or error free. You therefore view the following information at your own risk.

You should obtain specific travel health advice in relation to your individual needs and your intended travel, including advice on vaccinations, anti-malarial and other medications based on your past vaccination history, your present medical condition and your intended itinerary.

Our staff at travelvax.com.au are trained in the medical travel health area and are able to advise you on your specific individual needs. Please feel free to contact us on 1300 360 164 for assistance.

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About South Africa Vaccinations

The Republic of South Africa lies at Africa’s southern tip, bordered to the north by Namibia, Botswana and Zambia.  A narrow coastal zone gives way to an extensive interior plateau ranging from 910m to 1820m. With the Indian and Atlantic oceans either side, South Africa’s moderate climate features sunny days and cool nights. The yearly mean temperature is mild, ranging from 17°C in the south and 16°C in the north (18°C in Pretoria). Inland temperatures are tempered by the moderately high altitude. The seasons are similar to Australia: summer October-March, winter June-September. The summer months bring rains to Pretoria-Johannesburg area (temperatures to 32°C, cool nights), while winter is dry and cool (temperatures from 1°C to 24°C). South Africa offers everything from beautiful wild beaches, dynamic cities and wildlife experiences second to none. Well known for producing some great wines, South Africa is a popular spot with tourists and is fast becoming the business hub of Africa. The information below is intended to make sure you get the correct injections, vaccinations and advice  for South Africa.

Overall Risk
Medium Risk - Preventable disease occur sporadically or at moderate levels. Consult a Travelvax clinic for your specific risk if travelling outside resorts, 5 star accommodation or for periods longer than a few days.
Malaria Risk
Malaria is present, whether or not anti-malarial medications are recommended will need to be discussed with a medical practitioner. Consult a Travelvax clinic for long stays or significant level of outdoor activities.

Travel Health Alerts

Vaccine Preventable Diseases

Yellow Fever

A yellow fever vaccination certificate is required for travellers aged 1 year or over arriving from countries with risk of yellow fever transmission and for travellers having transited more than 12 hours through an airport of a country with risk of yellow fever transmission.  

 No vaccination certificate is required for direct travel from Australia or New Zealand.

Travelvax has doctors who are yellow fever vaccination-accredited. Click here to learn more about Yellow Fever.

Hepatitis A

Risk of Hepatitis A infection is high for all travellers, vaccination recommended. Click here to learn more about the Hepatitis A vaccination.

Hepatitis B

Moderate presence of Hepatitis B in local population. Vaccination would be recommended. Click here to learn more about the Hepatitis B vaccination.

Typhoid

Moderate risk for most travellers. Vaccination recommended for travel to smaller cities, villages and rural areas outside usual tourist routes. Some medical conditions pre-dispose to infection; whether vaccinations would be recommended should be discussed with a medical practitioner. Consult a medical practitioner for your specific risk. To learn more about Typhoid and the available vaccinations, click here.

Influenza

Southern hemisphere winter risk (May to October). Most common vaccine preventable illness in travellers. Vaccine recommended, effective for 1 year. To learn more about the Influenza virus, click here.

Rabies

Disease present. Recommendation for vaccination will depend on specific itinerary and activities planned. Generally rabies vaccination is advised for high risk individuals such as veterinarians or animal handlers, cavers. Additionally for higher risk travellers who plan: extended periods outdoors, rural travel, adventurous activities including bicycling; also expats or long-term travellers to endemic regions and children (risk of more severe or risk-prone bites and may not report contact at all). Click here to learn more about rabies.

Japanese Encephalitis

No risk to travellers.

Polio

No risk to travellers.

Tickborne Encephalitis

No risk to travellers.

Meningococcal Meningitis

Low risk to travellers.

Cholera

Disease is present, however the risk is low for the majority of travellers. Peace corp, volunteers, refugee workers etc need to consider vaccination. All travellers should take food and water precautions. Consult a medical practitioner for your specific risk. Learn more about Cholera and available vaccinations here.

Other Diseases

Travellers Diarrhoea

Moderate risk. Travellers' Diarrhoea affects 20-60% of overseas travellers, food and water precautions are essential. Self-treatment medications may be recommended. Click here to learn more about the common symptoms and ways to prevent getting Travellers' Diarrhoea.

Insect-borne Diseases

Diseases such as Dengue, Chikungunya, Zika may be present. Seasonal risk will vary by country. Whether preventive measures will be recommended will depend on itinerary, length of stay, type of travel etc. and needs to be discussed with a medical practitioner. For those countries with disease present, risk is highest in urban and semi-urban areas, but may also occur in rural areas; insect avoidance measures are highly recommended all year round. Travelvax believes that the best defence is to understand their habits, dress properly and use an effective insect repellent in the correct manner. Consult a medical practitioner for your specific risk.

Schistosomiasis

Swimming or bathing in freshwater is the main cause of infection. Avoid freshwater contact if you are unsure of origin. Learn more about Schistosomiasis here.

STIs

Sexually transmitted and blood-borne diseases occur. The risk to travellers can be greatly reduced by practising safe sex with any new partner. All travellers should carry condoms. Blood borne diseases (HIV, Hepatitis B & C) can be spread by blood transfusion, tattooing, body piercing or non-sterile needles. Travellers in high risk groups should carry sterile needles (see also Medical Care). Understand the symptoms and how to prevent STIs here.

Altitude

Altitude illness is a risk to travellers ascending higher than 2000 meters. Preventative medication is available. Consult a medical practitioner if ascending to 2000 metres or above. Click here to learn more about Altitude illness.

Additional Information

Personal Safety

In order to check before and during travel for any high-risk areas visit the Smartraveller website. Avoid unnecessary displays of wealth or valuables and minimise the amounts of cash carried. Keep secure records of passport/credit card/licence numbers. For more safety tips visit: www.smartraveller.gov.au.

Medical Care

Limited medical facilities available. Unless travelling with a well-equipped organisation, a high level of self-sufficiency in terms of first aid kits and sterile equipment is recommended. An evacuation contingency should be a part of your travel insurance. Check for any contacts supplied by your emergency assistance organisation (nominated by your travel insurer) or with IAMAT (International Association of Medical Assistance for Travellers).

First Aid Kits & Accessories

Carry a basic first aid kit, customised to your activities. For longer stays consider a needle and syringe pack and medication for travellers diarrhoea.

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