Early modelling had shown that this year would become a peak in the cycle of tick-borne encephalitis (TBE) infections, with the southern states and in particular, Bavaria, most affected. Castor bean (Ixodes ricinus) tick numbers have been increasing across the country, reaching a 10-year high this year. TBE cases in the south have exceeded last year’s record high figures - the advice for residents and travellers at risk is to consider vaccination and take appropriate measures to avoid tick bites. Read more
Advice for travellers
A viral infection, TBE can cause fever, vomiting, cramps and paralysis, which can be prolonged. In rare instances, infection can be fatal. Travellers who spend time in regions where TBE is endemic – mainly forested areas of Central and Eastern Europe, Russia, Northern China, and Mongolia – may be at risk. The highest risk is during the warmer months from April to November, especially when hiking or camping in areas below 1500m. VACCINE: While safe and effective vaccines are available in Europe, none are licensed in Australia. However, vaccination can be obtained through a Special Access Scheme. Read more about TBE.
Before you travel, call Travelvax Australia’s telephone advisory service on 1300 360 164 (toll-free from landlines) for country-specific advice and information. You can also make an appointment at your nearest Travelvax clinic to obtain vaccinations, medication to prevent or treat illness, and accessories for your journey.