You can find many information what kind of vaccinations for Indonesia you may need, if you are planning to come to here for longer time (or shorter). But the risks to health whilst traveling will vary between individuals and many issues need to be taken into account, e.g. activities in Indonesia, length of stay, in which part of Indonesia you will stay and general health of the traveler. As well maybe some of the vaccines you already got in the childhood?
It’s recommended that you consult with your general practitioner or practice nurse 6-8 weeks in advance of travel. They will assess your particular health risks before recommending vaccines and /or antimalarial tablets. This is also a good opportunity to discuss important travel health issues including safe food and water, accidents, sun exposure and insect bites. Many of the problems experienced by travelers can’t be prevented by vaccinations and other preventive measures need to be taken.
- First of all check in your medical report which vaccines you got in the childhood and for how long it valid (or ask your parents)
- Second, talk with the doctor, give as much as possible information – where exactly you will stay in Indonesia, for how long, what are your plans for traveling around.
The doctor will recommend vaccines and you can choose which one you really need. Don’t make too many vaccines just because of safety. Many things will depend on you, for example where you will eat, how you will take care of your hygiene, how you prevent yourself from mosquitoes and etc.
Before coming to Indonesia I made such vaccines:
- Hepatitis A (I manage to make only 2 before coming and after all I found out that I didn’t need this one at all, like I got it in childhood)
- Hepatitis B (I made 2 before coming to Indonesia and 3rd in Indonesia)
Which vaccines to make suggest some internet sources (you can find and other recommendations)
- Courses or boosters usually advised: Diphtheria; Hepatitis A; Tetanus; Typhoid.
- Other vaccines to consider: Cholera; Hepatitis B; Japanese Encephalitis; Rabies.
- Yellow fever vaccination certificate required for travelers over 9 months of age arriving from countries with risk of yellow fever transmission.
Notes on the diseases mentioned above:
- Cholera: spread through consumption of contaminated water and food. More common during floods and after natural disasters, in areas with very poor sanitation and lack of clean drinking water. It would be unusual for travelers to contract cholera if they take basic precautions with food and water and maintain a good standard of hygiene.
- Diphtheria: spread person to person through respiratory droplets. Risk is higher if mixing with locals in poor, overcrowded living conditions.
- Hepatitis A: spread through consuming contaminated food and water or person to person through the faecal-oral route. Risk is higher where personal hygiene and sanitation are poor.
- Hepatitis B: spread through infected blood and blood products, contaminated needles and medical instruments and sexual intercourse. Risk is higher for those at occupational risk, long stays or frequent travel, children (exposed through cuts and scratches) and individuals who may need, or request, surgical procedures abroad.
- Japanese Encephalitis: spread through the bite of an infected mosquito. This mosquito breeds in rice paddies and mainly bites between dusk and dawn. Risk is higher for long stay travelers to rural areas, particularly if unable to avoid mosquito bites.
- Rabies: spread through the saliva of an infected animal, usually through a bite, scratch or lick on broken skin. Particularly dogs and related species, but also bats. Risk is higher for those going to remote areas (who may not be able to promptly access appropriate treatment in the event of a bite), long stays, those at higher risk of contact with animals and bats, and children. Even when per-exposure vaccine has been received, urgent medical advice should be sought after any animal or bat bite.
- Tetanus: spread through contamination of cuts, burns and wounds with tetanus spores. Spores are found in soil worldwide. A total of 5 doses of tetanus vaccine are recommended for life in the UK. Boosters are usually recommended in a country or situation where the correct treatment of an injury may not be readily available.
- Typhoid: spread mainly through consumption of contaminated food and drink. Risk is higher where access to adequate sanitation and safe water is limited.
Malaria is a serious and sometimes fatal disease transmitted by mosquitoes. You cannot be vaccinated against malaria.
- Malaria risk is present in most areas, except Jakarta municipality, main cities, urban areas and the main tourist resorts, throughout the year. Risk is highest in rural areas and in the five eastern provinces of East Nusa Tengarra, Maluku, North Maluku, Papua and West Papua.
- In North Sumatra, Jambi, Bengkulu, Borneo/Kalimantan, Central, South East and North Sulawesi and West Nusa Tenggara, risk is not high enough to warrant antimalarial tablets for most travelers, however, it may be considered for certain groups who may be at higher risk e.g. longer stay in rural areas, visiting friends or relatives, those with medical conditions, immunosuppression or those without a spleen.
- There is low to no risk in Jakarta municipality, the main cities, urban areas and the main tourist resorts, including Bali and Java.
- Check with your doctor or nurse about suitable antimalarial tablets. Atovaquone/proguanil OR doxycycline OR mefloquine is the first choice.
- Malaria precautions: avoid mosquito bites by covering up with clothing such as long sleeves and long trousers especially after sunset, using insect repellents on exposed skin and, when necessary, sleeping under a mosquito net.
- If you have been traveling in a malaria’s area and develop a fever seek medical attention promptly.
- Remember malaria can develop even up to one year after exposure.
- If traveling to high risk malaria’s areas, remote from medical facilities, carrying emergency malaria standby treatment may be considered.
A viral illness that is transmitted to humans by mosquito bites. The mosquito that spreads dengue bites during the day and is more common in urban areas. Symptoms include fever, headache, severe joint, bone and muscular pain – hence its other name “break bone fever”. There is no vaccine and prevention is through avoidance of mosquito bites. Every 5 years in Indonesia exist outbreak of Dengue fever, this year (2015) was the 5th year, so many people got it.
Some information used from internet sources.
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6 thoughts on “Vaccinations for Indonesia”
Hi, Are vaccines mandatory? I’m very anti-vaccine for a lot of different reasons and don’t want to be forced to get vaccined.
It depends for how long you are coming to Indonesia and to which islands :)
In order not to get any unpleasant feelings and health problems during the trip, you need to take care of your health in advance and get vaccinations.
I agree. It’s better to pay for insurance rather than pay huge bills if something will happen during the trip :)
I have had my Hep A vaccination and the nurse said that I could think about whether or not I should get Typhoid.
I am going to Jogjakarta but we stop in Bali for a few hours and we also go into caves and stuff in Jogjakarta.
Should I get Typhoid just in case?
Honestly, I can’t advise anything like it’s your own choice :) You should find out what kind of risk can be without taking this vaccination and if you will have any chance to get sick
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