Essential Info > Before You Come

Medical Concerns

By: kimberly on 11 Apr 2011
Travelling on holiday can bring a lot excitement as well as fear.

In order to minimise susceptibility to illnesses, it is advised t get relevent shots from your own country before coming to Singapore. Bringing your own personal medicine to aid basic ailments are also permissible through Singapore shores.

Singapore is generally a medically safe country, where even outbreaks of epidemics are controlled as best as possible. However, to be on the safe side, get the following done before coming here. First of all, from one to two months before coming to Singapore, visit your personal physician for a checkup and to get your vaccination shots.

The first vaccination you should get is Hepatitis A, which is usually administered in two shots. This will prevent you from getting inflammation in the liver.

The second shot to take is a yellow fever shot. While the Hepatitis A shot is recommended for all travellers, this shot is only required if you have transited or arrived from an infected area in Africa or the Americas.

The third shot to take is Hepatitis B, which is another type of liver inflammation that may lead to, in some cases, liver cirrhosis.

The Measles,Mumps and Rubella shot is also another recommended shot for all travellers to take, since these diseases are highly contagious. Usually, the most common ailment is travelers' diarrhea, which would occur if the food and water do not agree with the travellers.

Bring along antibotics and antidiarrhea drugs to be used in the event this happens. If associated with nausea, vomitting, cramps, fever or bloody stools, the doctor would likely prescribe a quinolone antibiotic or rifaximin if one is allergic to quinolone. Rather than attempting to self-medicate, simply make your way down to one of our clinics or hospitals and get the correct medicine.

Most cases are usually mild and require only adequate fluid intake, but if symptoms persist and the diarrhea lasts more than 3 full days, medical attention should be sought. If you're are intending to venture out into forested areas such as parks and nature reserves, it may be a good idea to wear long sleeves, long pants, hats and shoes. If the heat bothers you, an alternative would be to apply insect repellents to exposed skin, excepting the eyes, mouth and open wounds.

Remember to reapply every few hours to further protect yourself. Apply permethrin-containing compounds to clothes, shoes and bed nets if camping outdoors to reinforce the protection against insects. Remember to bring enough of all medications in their original containers.

To make it easier for you to pass customs with them, make sure they are clearly labelled and have a signed and dated letter from your physician detailing your medical conditions, if any, and listing the medications with layman terms as well.

If you are packing syringes or needles, make sure your physician has given you a letter stating why these are necessary. Also, stash duplicates of medicine in checked luggage and hand luggage so they are easily accessible. If you have significant medical problems, wear a medical alert bracelet or at least have a note with your condition and how to deal with the situation on your person.

Get medical and travel insurance so your medical expenses overseas will be covered. Bring your insurance card, associated claim forms and other relevant insurance documents, and perhaps more morbidly, make sure your insurance plan will pay the providers or reimburse you later.

Prevent blood clots in your legs by contracting leg muscles periodically, walking around the cabin. Do not be afraid to take off your shoes and relax on the plane, I assure you everyone else is doing the same.

Take the necessary precautions and let your travels to Singapore be as worry-free as possible!

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