Make vaccinations part of your travel planning

When planning my extended travel trip to South America I knew there would be some surprises. But I didn’t think one of them would be from having the Yellow Fever vaccination at my age.

I’d roughly planned the countries to visit, made a list of “must see” places and started to research which vaccination were needed. The Pantanal in Brazil was high on my list of destinations but it fell in an area where Yellow Fever vaccination is required. When consulting with my GP surgery I learnt that the side effects of the vaccination can be more risky for people over 60 than for other age groups. Do I take the risk or modify my plans and avoid the Pantanal?

More research about other destinations Iguazu Falls and Bolivia compounded my dilemma. There had been recent cases of yellow fever reported at Iguazu Falls and a yellow fever vaccination certificate is compulsory for entering Bolivia. Further consultation with a specialist travel clinic and my partner convinced me the risk was worth taking. And lesson learnt = not to skim over making vaccinations, and health in general, as part of your travel planning.

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