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Over-confident Brits overlook travel jabs

25-Aug-2006

Complacent Britons are putting their health at risk by travelling abroad without the recommended travel vaccinations.

New research released by Number One Health, the Harley Street travel and personal health specialist, has revealed that the British public are not as clued up about the required vaccinations as they think they are.

Although nearly half of the respondents surveyed by online health-focussed research company Opinion Health claimed to be well informed about the vaccinations needed to travel abroad, many subsequently failed to demonstrate critical knowledge on the various requirements.

Only 46 per cent were aware that a rabies vaccination is necessary in Asia, despite the fact that the disease is a major killer in India.

Even though more people die from tuberculosis (TB) in Africa than any other world region, only half of respondents knew that a TB vaccination is required when travelling on the continent.

And half of respondents insisted that a yellow fever vaccination was needed to travel to Asia, despite there being no risk.

"This research shows a certain misguided confidence amongst consumers regarding critical vaccinations needed to travel to certain parts of the world," said Charlie Easmon, medical director at Number One Health.

Mr Easmon commented that people think they are well-informed when, in reality, they should always visit a travel clinic or consult a healthcare professional.

He concluded: "I urge all people who are planning on travelling to seek professional advice about what [vaccinations] are needed for the countries they are visiting in order to avoid any threat to their health."

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