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Travel Medicine Frequently Asked Questions

How soon should I start getting my immunizations before travel?
Ideally, you should see a healthcare provider four to six weeks prior to your departure date.

Will my insurance cover my visit?
Immunizations for the purpose of travel aren’t typically covered by health insurance, so it’s Kelsey-Seybold's policy not to file insurance. We accept cash, check, or credit card for payments. We can provide you with a receipt of your charges and payment received if you wish to self-file a claim with your insurance company.

Will I see a doctor?
Kelsey-Seybold travel sites are staffed by specially trained foreign travel nurses.

How can I find out which immunizations are recommended for my travel?
This will be discussed with you at the time of your consultation at Kelsey-Seybold. If you would like to review the information prior to the appointment, please go to cdc.gov/travel or who.int for current recommendations and requirements. Other information, including health precautions you should take while traveling, are also on these sites and will be discussed at your consultation.

What’s the difference between required and recommended immunizations?
A required vaccination is one for which formal proof of immunization is needed to enter one of the destination countries. This immunization needs to be administered at least 10 days prior to entry. A recommended immunization is one that’s suggested to protect travelers from illnesses while out of the country but that isn’t required by any government for entry.

Do my children need vaccines?
Children are at the same risk as adults for the diseases listed for each country and should be protected by immunizations. Some foreign travel immunizations cannot be given to infants and small children.

Can I receive vaccines if I’m pregnant?
You should check with your healthcare provider before scheduling any immunizations. Some travel immunizations haven’t been studied in women who are pregnant, in which case the safety rate is not adequately documented.

Can you provide a yellow card?
The yellow card is the International Certificate of Vaccination, which is used most specifically to document yellow fever immunization and other required vaccinations. A yellow card will be provided at the time of your immunization.

Can my whole family of four come at one time?
Our travel representatives can assist you with scheduling your family's appointments by calling 713-442-TRIP (8747). We will help schedule a time convenient for the whole family.

Can I just walk in for an appointment?
All travel appointments need to be scheduled, which can be done by calling 713-442-TRIP (8747) or by filling out our online form.

I always need something for diarrhea and altitude illness. Can you provide these prescriptions as well?
You will have to talk to your personal physician to obtain these medications because our travel nurses can only provide prescriptions for malaria prophylaxis and oral typhoid.

I have a compromised immune system. Can I receive vaccines?
If you have an autoimmune condition or compromised immune system, we recommend that you discuss all immunizations with your personal physician and get an approval prior to your travel consultation. Most vaccines can still be given.

Can I just get malaria medication?
Even if you are only interested in getting malaria prophylaxis, you still need to schedule a travel consultation with one of our specially trained travel nurses to go over all the specific recommendations for your trip and discuss the appropriate medication. New vaccines or booster vaccines are sometimes needed by individuals who are unaware their shots aren’t up to date or who have a chronic condition or health risks requiring a shot prior to travel.

I grew up in the country I’m visiting and will be visiting family and friends. Why do I need immunizations?
If you have lived in the U.S. for more than a few years, your immunity to infectious diseases in your home country has likely lapsed, and immunizations can help keep you well during your visit. It’s important to immunize your children born in the U.S. prior to their visit abroad as they will be at higher risk for a variety of illnesses while staying in homes and neighborhoods than if they were staying in resort accommodations.

 

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You can book appointments through our secure online patient portal, or call our 24/7 Contact Center.

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