Your health is an important consideration as you prepare for your trip to Uganda. Travel to Africa raises some health concerns, but fortunately in this day and age the risks can be minimized with the appropriate information and preparation.
Make sure that you consult your doctor one to two months before your departure. Some general recommendations are listed below. You may want to discuss these with your doctor and realize that, because everybody is different, your doctor may have specific recommendations for you
Immunizations are an important part of your preparation. You should have the following immunizations:
Malaria is a serious, but preventable infection that can be fatal. Prevent this deadly disease by taking a prescription anti-malarial drug, and by protecting yourself against mosquito bites.
Larium (mefloquine) is the recommended drug to prevent Malaria. This is taken once a week starting one week before leaving the U.S.A. and continued for 4 weeks upon return. If Larium can not be tolerated then either Malarone(atovaquone/proguanil) or doxycycline is recommended. These are taken daily and should be started 2 days prior to departure. Malarone should be continued for seven days after return while doxyclycline should be continued for 4 weeks after your return.
Food and Waterborn Diseases
Food and waterborne diseases are the number one cause of illness in travelers. Travelers’ diarrhea can be caused by viruses, bacteria, or parasites, which are found throughout the region and can contaminate food or water. Infections may cause diarrhea and vomiting (E. coli, Salmonella, cholera, and parasites), fever (typhoid fever and toxoplasmosis), or liver damage (hepatitis). Make sure your food and drinking water are safe.
Schistosomiasis, a parasitic infection, is found in fresh water in Uganda. Do not swim in fresh water (except in well-chlorinated swimming pools).