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Last updated : Nov 2009
China Health
China Health - TravelPuppy.com
  Special Precautions Certificate Required
Yellow Fever Yes 1
Cholera Yes 2
Typhoid and Polio 3 N/A
Malaria 4 N/A
1) A yellow fever vaccination certificate is a requirement for all travellers arriving within 6 days of departing an infected area.

2) Following gudelines issued by WHO in 1973, a cholera vaccination certificate is not a requirement for entry into China. However, cholera is a slight risk and precautions should be considered. Current advice should be sought prior to deciding whether or not to receive a vaccination, as medical opinion is divided over its effectiveness. For further details, read the Health appendix. A strain of Bengal cholera was reported in western areas.

3) Reliable data has shown that Poliovirus transmission has been been entirely interrupted since1994 through successful eradication programmes.

4) Malaria risk exists all over the country below 1,500 metres except in Inner Mongolia, Beijing, Qinghai, Heilongjiang, Gansu, Jilin, Ningxia, Shanxi, Tibet (Xizang, except in the Zangbo River Valley in the extreme southeast) and Xinjiang (except in the Yili River Valley).

North of 33°N, the risk begins in July and lasts until November, between 33°N and 25°N between May and December, and south of 25°N throughout the year. The disease occurs mainly in the benign vivax form but the malignant falciparum form is also evident and has been said to be multidrug-resistant. The advised prophylaxis in risk areas is chloroquine, or mefloquine in Hainan and Yunnan.

Food & drink

Outside main centres all water used for drinking, brushing teeth or freezing should first be boiled or otherwise sterilised. Only eat well-done meat and fish, preferably served hot. Pork, salad and mayonnaise can possibly carry increased risk. Fruit should be peeled and vegetables cooked.

Additional risks

Bilharzia (schistosomiasis) is endemic in the central Yangtze river basin. Do not swim or padde in fresh water; Chlorinated swimming pools that are well maintained are safe.

Hepatitis E exists in northeastern and northwestern China and hepatitis A is common throughout the country. Hepatitis B is highly endemic.

Tuberculosis is common in indigenous people. Some risk ofplague is present .

Oriental liver fluke (clonorchiasis), oriental lung fluke (paragonimiasis) and giant intestinal fluke (fasciolopsiasis) have been reported, and brucellosis also occurs.

and brugian filariasis is reported in southern China, visceral leishmaniasis is increasingly common all over, and cutaneous leishmaniasis has been reported from Xinjiang.

Haemorrhagic fever with renal syndrome is endemic. Precautions are recommended against Japanese encephalitis, especially in rural areas.

or scrub typhus may be present in scrub areas of southern China.

Altitude sickness can be a problem in parts of Gansu, Sichuan, Qinghai, Xinjiang, Tibet and Yannan.

Rabies is present, however the Government's policy bans dogs and cats from main cities, therefore makes this less of a risk in these areas. For those at high risk, vaccination prior to arrival is recommended. If you are bitten, seek medical attention without delay. For additional information, consult the Health appendix.

Health care

Medical costs are low. Many medicines common in the West are unavailable in China. Medical facilities in international hospitals are superb.

Many traditional forms of medicine are used in China, the most notable being acupuncture.

Medical insurance is strongly recommended.
Useful travel links
CDC official web site of the US Centers for Disease Control
Health-China health information for travellers to China
MASTA Medical Advisory Services for Travellers
No jet lag all about jet lag. What is it and who gets it
SOS international SOS
WHO-China World Health Organization official web site-China