Opportunities to travel to the far corners of the world have never been as great as they are now including for people with chronic diseases or serious health issues. It is important, however, that such travellers take extra precautions to ensure that their health does not deteriorate while they are abroad.
People with chronic illnesses or diseases are at a higher risk of serious infections than healthier travellers. This is true, for example, if you are taking medication which affects your immune system such as Prednison or other anti-inflammatories or medication for rheumatic disorders or autoimmune illnesses. Even drugs which suppress the immune system after an organ transplant or those prescribed for a malignant disease can increase the risk of infections. Other persons at risk include those who have no spleen or who need to inject insulin to manage diabetes.
It is especially advisable for persons at special risk to take extra precautions when visiting a tropical country. The low standards of hygiene in many areas of such countries, in combination with high temperatures and humidity, mean that they can be a breeding ground for infections. People with existing health problems are more prone to these infections. Moreover, the risk of complications should they contract diarrhoea, fever and/or other infections is also heightened.
The Erasmus MC has a special clinic for travellers who have special needs. They can come to us for personal advice about vaccinations and other measures which they can take before, during and after their trip so as to reduce the risks they face. If you are about to start taking any of the medications referred to above you are very welcome to make an appointment at our special clinic. When you come, please bring a referral from your doctor or specialist. The Erasmus MC also provides aftercare for travellers with special needs who experience health problems on their return home via our special clinic. In certain special circumstances such travellers may be referred to our knowledge centre.
Pregnant women do not fall into the category of travellers with special needs, but they are welcome to make use of our regular services.
The clinic for travellers who have special needs can only be attended by appointment. To make an appointment please call +31(0) 6 50 031 973.