Public Health Information It is important to be aware of the public health risks you undertake when traveling to a foreign country, especially for extended periods of time. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention provides information regarding both the vaccine requirements for entry into other countries and basic pubic health practices.
All IMPA PIRE personnel traveling to Malaysia should visit the CDC's website:
Make sure your routine vaccinations are up-to-date 4-6 weeks prior to departing. In addition, it is also suggested that travelers to Indonesia receive their Hepatitis B and Hepatitis A vaccinations. (These vaccinations are recommended in addition to routine vaccinations even if you do not travel.) No risk of malaria is considered to exist in urban and coastal areas of Malaysia. Risk may exist is rural areas, particularly in the forested hilly, and underdeveloped interior areas. For detailed information on the prevention of malaria and malaria-risk areas in Indonesia, visit the CDC's website.
In addition to over-the-counter medication and basic first aid items, the CDC suggests bringing the following items with you:
• Prescription medications you take everyday (keep them in their original bottles and make sure you have enough to last your entire stay)
• Anti-malarial drugs (if deemed necessary)
• Medicine for diarrhea
• Portable water filters and iodine tablets if bottled water is not available
• Sunblock and sunglasses
• Protection from insect bites.
Insects are an important vector for disease, including malaria. Protect yourself by bringing lightweight, long-sleeved shirts, long pants, a hat to wear outside, and insect repellent. Bed-nets treated with permethrin are recommended if you will not be sleeping in an air-conditioned or well-screened room and will be in malaria-risk areas.
The Malaysian government requires travelers arriving from countries where yellow fever is present to present proof of yellow fever vaccination. If you will be traveling through Africa or Central or South America before going to Malaysia, you may need proof of vaccination. Visit the CDC's website for a list of the countries within the yellow fever endemic zone.