Operation Wallacea are not able to give official advice on inoculations. Some people are not able to have certain jabs, so blanket generalisations cannot be made. You must consult your GP, travel clinic or doctor for personal advice.
It is also worth checking the NaTHNaC web site for up to date advice. The NaTHNaC page for Mexico can be found here. The NHS also offers advice on their fit for travel website (found here for Mexico) although this maintains the assumption that you are up to date with inoculations as recommended for life in Britain. (link)
To allow sufficient time for all the necessary immunisations it is recommended that you consult your Doctor or travel clinic three months prior to departure.
We suggest that you are up-to-date with the following inoculations though:
Rabies – If you are based at the forest site completing a bat based dissertation you will have the opportunity to handle bats during surveys however you will only be able to do this if you have had the rabies immunisation. If not handling bats we do not require you to have the rabies vaccinations, though you should discuss all vaccinations with your doctor or travel nurse, and take into consideration any other travel plans in the near future.
Malaria is present in certain areas Mexico and is generally seen as a variable however at our sites the risk is considered to be extremely low so most healthcare professionals will not recommended you take prophylactics. However, advice changes from time to time so again, always check with your doctor for current advice. When you do see your doctor regarding Mexico, ensure you inform them if you will be heading into the forest as opposed to staying on the coast. The Malaria risk is more prevalent in different areas such as the forests, so the advice may differ.
Most malarial prophylactics require you start taking them before travel. No drug offers complete protection from contracting malaria. The only sure way of preventing diseases transmitted through insect bites (particularly mosquitoes and ticks) is to prevent being bitten. Use precautions including insect repellent; cover exposed skin, use of mosquito nets etc. Please bear in mind that if you are taking the prophylaxis Larium, you are not allowed to dive.
HIV/Aids and Hepatitis B are present in some form in each country that Operation Wallacea operates in, but there is absolutely no reason why this should present a problem for anybody on an Opwall expedition providing you always act responsibly and practice safe sex.
There is a Hepatitis B vaccine available, as with all other vaccines follow the advice given by your medical professional regarding receiving it.
The effectiveness of the contraceptive pill is compromised in the instance of sickness, diarrhea and whilst taking antibiotics so please bring alternative methods of contraception, even if you are travelling with your partner.