Before visiting India, you may need to get the following vaccinations and medications for vaccine-preventable diseases and other diseases for which you might be at risk.Hepatitis A: Recommended for all visitors over one year of age. It should be given at least two weeks (preferably four weeks or more) before departure. A booster should be given 6-12 months later to confer long-term immunity. Those less than one year of age or allergic to a vaccine component should receive a single intramuscular dose of immune globulin. Re-vaccination is required every ten years.
Hepatitis B: Vaccine is recommended for all visitors if not previously vaccinated. Re-vaccination is required every ten years.
Typhoid: Recommended for all visitors. Re-vaccination is required every three years.
Polio: Any adult who received the recommended childhood immunizations but never received a booster as an adult should be given a single dose of inactivated polio vaccine. All children should be up-to-date in their polio immunizations and any adult who never completed the initial series of immunizations should do so before departure.
Japanese Encephalitis: Recommended for long-term (one month or more) travelers to rural areas or travelers who may engage in extensive unprotected outdoor activities in rural areas, especially in the evening, during shorter trips.
Rabies: Vaccine is recommended for those who intend to spend a lot of time outdoors, for those at high risk for animal bites (veterinarians and animal handlers), and for travelers involved in any activities that might bring them into direct contact with bats. Children are considered at higher risk because they tend to play with animals, may receive more severe bites, or may not report bites. Dog bites account for most cases of rabies in India. Bites from cats, tigers, camels, and the Indian civet may also transmit rabies.
All expats should also be up-to-date on routine immunizations, including
- Tetanus-diphtheria vaccine
- Measles vaccine
- Varicella (chickenpox) vaccine (if you haven’t already had the virus)
Cholera vaccine is not generally recommended, even though outbreaks occur.
Yellow fever vaccination is required for all expats arriving from a yellow-fever-infected country in Africa or the Americas.
Malaria:Malaria occurs in most parts of India (including large cities) and there is no vaccination against it. Malaria prophylaxis (preventative medicine) is a possibility, although long-term usage comes with health risks so it’s best to discuss a prevention plan with your physician. The best course of action is to avoid being bitten by using mosquito sprays containing DEET and investing in plug-in mosquito repellents (brands such as All Out and Good Knight are widely available in India). Preventing mosquito bites will not only help reduce your risk of contracting malaria, but will also help protect you from other, more prevalent mosquito-borne illnesses, such as Dengue Fever.Sanitation
Despite efforts to clean up the air quality in Delhi, the city remains very dusty and polluted and asthmatic people and those with dust allergies may have a hard time adjusting to the air here. Respiratory infections are also common. Diarrhea is another common ailment in India, and it’s usually provoked by contaminated food and water. In case of diarrhea, a good amount of fluid intake is required. While diarreah is usually just your body’s way of ridding itself of bad food or water, it can often be a sign of more serious conditions, such as giardia and amoebic dysentery. If symptoms last more than a couple of days or become severe, then you should immediately seek medical treatment.