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DON’T LEAVE HOME WITHOUT IT

- Travelers Encouraged to Check Vaccinations Are Up-to-Date to Avoid Illnesses Along the Way -

If you are planning a trip in coming months, pack a dose of protection by ensuring you are caught up on all your vaccinations.

The Haliburton, Kawartha, Pine Ridge District Health Unit is reminding local residents to make vaccination part of their travel plans – especially if their destination is outside Canada. Being up-to-date on all routine vaccinations is strongly recommended, as well as getting special vaccines to protect against travel-related illnesses.

The Health Unit’s vaccination reminder for travelers comes ahead of Immunization Awareness Week (April 22-29). The reminder also coincides with several cases of Canadians becoming sick with measles picked up in other countries. The situation has prompted Canada’s interim Chief Public Health Officer, Dr. Theresa Tam, to specifically advise travelers to get vaccinated for measles.

“Finding out what travel vaccines you need before leaving home can ensure your dream getaway doesn’t become a nightmare,” says Marianne Rock, Manager of Communicable Disease Control, Evaluation and Epidemiology with the HKPR District Health Unit. “Vaccines are safe and effective, and can reduce your risk of getting sick from vaccine-preventable illnesses that circulate in other parts of the world.”

Depending on their destination, there could be health risks that travelers would not normally be exposed to at home. For that reason, Rock encourages people to plan ahead – especially to allow time if multiple doses of a vaccine are required. A good source of travel health and vaccine information is the Canadian government travel website, which lists recommended travel vaccines on a country-by-country basis.

Local pharmacists and travel health clinics can also assist travelers in finding out what vaccines they may need. For information about the publicly-funded vaccinations recommended for children, youth and adults in Ontario, call the Health Unit at 1-866-888-4577, ext. 1507, or visit www.hkpr.on.ca. Local residents can also download the free CANImmunze phone app to track their family’s vaccinations and get reminders when vaccines are required.

For media inquiries, contact:

Marianne Rock, Manager, Communicable Disease Control, Evaluation and Epidemiology, HKPR District Health Unit, (905) 885-9100 or toll-free: 1-866-888-4577, ext. 1486.

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