Travel Health Assessment
Travel Health Service
If you are thinking about travelling to other parts of the world, it may be necessary to get vaccinations against certain diseases, as well as anti-malaria medication before your trip.
When you travel, you can be exposed to diseases that are not present in Ireland. Vaccination against these diseases can help reduce your risk of contracting these diseases and becoming unwell.
If you have completed the Irish childhood vaccination programme, you may already have protection against some of these diseases, however, you may need additional vaccinations or booster doses of these vaccines depending on where you are going.
We would advise that your childhood vaccinations are up-to-date (If you are unsure you can check this with your local GP or HSE immunisation centre).
We can assess your potential risk of disease exposure and recommend travel vaccinations depending on your individual medical circumstances. Then, we can issue a prescription for these vaccinations and send it to your selected participating pharmacy where it will be given by a trained pharmacist.
*Please note we are not able to provide prescriptions for yellow fever vaccines.
Malaria is a serious and potentially fatal infection. If you travel to a high-risk malaria area, you are at risk of contracting this disease. Unfortunately, there is no vaccination against malaria, however, we can prescribe medication to decrease your risk of getting it. This medication is not 100% effective, but when used correctly and with mosquito prevention measures, over 90% protection can be achieved.
Is this service suitable for me?
This service is suitable for you if you:
- Are aged between 17 and 70 years
- Are travelling to another country where you may require travel vaccinations or anti-malaria treatment (doxycycline or malarone only)
- More than 4 weeks before your trip
- Are able to use one of our participating pharmacies to have your vaccinations administered
This service is not suitable for you if you:
- Are younger than 17 years or older than 70 years of age
- Are making this request for someone else (adult or child)
- Have a planned departure in less than 4 weeks
- Are pregnant, planning to become pregnant or breastfeeding
- Have severe kidney or liver disease
- Have had an anaphylactic reaction to any vaccine
- Are immunocompromised
- Have a bleeding disorder
- Take warfarin (blood thinning) medication
- Have had malaria in the past year
- Require a vaccination for yellow fever
If I am pregnant or breastfeeding, can I use this travel medicine service?
If you are pregnant or breastfeeding, this service is not appropriate for your travel health needs as you will need a more detailed risk assessment that we can accommodate safely as an online written consultation service.
We would advise that you arrange an assessment with your local GP or travel medicine clinic.
If I require travel vaccinations, where can I attend to have them administered?
We can send your prescription to one of the following pharmacies that offer the required vaccination services:
-Cavan, Boots Pharmacy
-Clare, Ennis, Boots Pharmacy
-Cork, Ballincollig, Boots Pharmacy
-Cork, Bandon, Boots Pharmacy
-Cork, Blackpool Shopping Centre, Boots Pharmacy
-Cork, Carrigaline, Boots Pharmacy
-Cork, Douglas, Boots Pharmacy
-Cork, Half Moon Street, Boots Pharmacy
-Cork, Macroom, Boots Pharmacy
-Cork, Mahon Point Shopping Centre, Boots Pharmacy
-Cork, Mallow, Boots Pharmacy
-Cork, Merchants Quay Shopping Centre, Boots Pharmacy
-Cork, Midleton, Boots Pharmacy
-Cork, Mitchelstown, Boots Pharmacy
-Cork, Patrick St, Boots Pharmacy
-Cork, Wilton, Boots Pharmacy
-Donegal, Letterkenny Main St, Boots Pharmacy
-Donegal, Letterkenny Retail Park, Boots Pharmacy
-Dublin, Balbriggan, Boots Pharmacy
-Dublin, Blackrock, Boots Pharmacy
-Dublin, Blanchardstown Shopping Centre, Boots Pharmacy
-Dublin, Carrickmines, Boots Pharmacy
-Dublin, Clondalkin, Boots Pharmacy
-Dublin, Dawson St, Boots Pharmacy
-Dublin, Deansgrange, Boots Pharmacy
-Dublin, Donaghmede, Boots Pharmacy
-Dublin, Donnybrook, Boots Pharmacy
-Dublin, Drimnagh, Boots Pharmacy
-Dublin, Dunlaoghaire Bloomfield, Boots Pharmacy
-Dublin, Grafton Street, Boots Pharmacy
-Dublin, Harolds Cross, Boots Pharmacy
-Dublin, Henry Street, Boots Pharmacy
-Dublin, Jervis Shopping Centre, Boots Pharmacy
-Dublin, Liffey Valley Shopping Centre, Boots Pharmacy
-Dublin, Malahide, Boots Pharmacy
-Dublin, Nugrove Shopping Centre, Boots Pharmacy
-Dublin, Phibsborough, Boots Pharmacy
-Dublin, Roselawn Shopping Centre, Boots Pharmacy
-Dublin, St Stephens Green, Boots Pharmacy
-Dublin, Swords Pavillion, Boots Pharmacy
-Dublin, Tallaght 245, Boots Pharmacy
-Dublin, Tallaght 319, Boots Pharmacy
-Dublin, Upper Baggot Street, Boots Pharmacy
-Galway, Knocknacarra, Boots Pharmacy
-Galway, Shopping Centre, Headford Rd, Boots Pharmacy
-Galway, Shop St, Boots Pharmacy
-Kerry, Tralee, Boots Pharmacy
-Kildare, Naas Dublin Road, Boots Pharmacy
-Kildare, Naas Monread, Boots Pharmacy
-Kildare, Newbridge, Boots Pharmacy
-Kilkenny, High St, Boots Pharmacy
-Kilkenny, Mc Donagh Shopping Centre, Boots Pharmacy
-Killarney, Boots Pharmacy
-Leitrim, Carrick on-Shannon, Boots Pharmacy
-Limerick, Childers Road, Boots Pharmacy
-Limerick, William St, Boots Pharmacy
-Louth, Drogheda, Boots Pharmacy
-Louth, Dundalk, Boots Pharmacy
-Mayo, Ballina, Boots Pharmacy
-Mayo, Castlebar, Boots Pharmacy
-Mayo, Claremorris, Boots Pharmacy
-Mayo, Westport, Boots Pharmacy
-Meath, Ashbourne, Boots Pharmacy
-Meath, Navan, Boots Pharmacy
-Monaghan, Boots Pharmacy
-Roscommon, Boots Pharmacy
-Sligo, Boots Pharmacy
-Tipperary, Clonmel, Boots Pharmacy
-Tipperary, Thurles, Boots Pharmacy
-Waterford, Boots Pharmacy
-Waterford, Tramore, Boots Pharmacy
-Westmeath, Athlone, Boots Pharmacy
-Wexford, Boots Pharmacy
-Wexford, Gorey, Boots Pharmacy
-Wicklow, Arklow, Boots Pharmacy
-Wicklow, Boots Pharmacy
-Wicklow, Greystones, Boots Pharmacy
*Please note: unfortunately, we cannot send prescriptions to a pharmacy that is not listed above at this time.
What will happen when I attend the pharmacy for my vaccination appointment?
This contains important information - please ensure you read this prior to making your appointment.
- You will need to bring valid photographic identification to all of your vaccination appointments. This will be checked by the pharmacist to ensure the details on your ID match the details on the prescription issued via this service.
- Your pharmacist will go over the specifics of the service with you and go over any relevant medical history. They will discuss how the vaccination will be given and will give you the opportunity to ask any questions.
- If you have a fever on the day of your appointment, you may be asked to return when you’re feeling better.
- If you are happy to proceed you will be given your vaccination. It will be administered in your upper arm, so please wear loose-fitting clothing or short sleeves.
- You will need to stay in the pharmacy for 15 minutes after your vaccination in case you experience any immediate side effects.
What happens next?
Your pharmacist will advise you on when to make your next appointment, depending on how many vaccinations you require.
Do I need travel vaccinations?
You should seek travel vaccine advice if you are planning to travel to countries outside of Western Europe, North America, Australia, and New Zealand.
The vaccines recommended will depend on several things:
- Where are you travelling to, the type of accommodation you will stay in and the activities you will do when you are there. For example, travelling to a rural area in a developing country will increase your risk of getting certain diseases compared to visiting an urban area in a developed country.
- Your general health e.g. if you are immunocompromised (weak immune system) or have a long-term illness, you may require additional vaccines.
- What vaccinations have you had in the past e.g. are your childhood vaccinations up to date? Or perhaps you have had vaccinations for travelling or work in the past?
Travel vaccines are generally classified as follows:
- Required (legally required to enter a country)
- Optional (may be advised depending on the type of travel planned and the medical history of the patient)
Travel vaccines do provide protection against disease, however, as with all vaccinations, it is important to be aware that they are not 100% effective. You should always ensure you take general precautions when travelling to reduce your risk of exposure to infections.
If you feel ill following your return to Ireland, make sure that you contact a doctor as soon as possible, especially if you have a fever/ high temperature.
What travel vaccines can you arrange for me?
- Hepatitis A
- Hepatitis B
- Japanese Encephalitis
- Meningitis ACW & Y
- Tick-Borne Encephalitis
*Please note we cannot arrange vaccination for yellow fever
The price of these vaccinations can vary between pharmacies. When you receive our recommendation, we would strongly advise that you speak to the pharmacy you plan to attend to have your vaccines administered about the cost of the vaccines.
Please note that more than one dose is required for some vaccinations, and that some vaccination combination products do exist (e.g. Diphtheria, tetanus and polio).
If I need travel vaccinations, who will give them to me?
If travel vaccines are recommended and prescribed via our service, then these are given by a trained pharmacist at one of our participating pharmacies.
When you have completed our online assessment questionnaire, you will be able to select a participating pharmacy and book an appointment time to get your vaccines.
If you would prefer, you can arrange an appointment with your local GP or travel medicine clinic. Vaccines can be administered at these clinics if required.
Where can I get more information on health and travelling?
It is important to be well informed from a reliable source about the area(s) you are travelling to and exposure to any potential risks. E.g., in some parts of the world Zika virus remains prevalent and travellers need to take additional precautions when then, or when they return, or even avoid travel to these parts.
You can find out more about the area you are travelling to and general health advice by visiting the NHS’s Fit For Travel website. Simply select the relevant country and check the region relevant to your trip.
When do I need to get the recommended travel vaccinations?
This depends on what vaccinations you need to get. Ideally, you should arrange a travel health assessment 8 weeks before you plan to travel. You will want to have adequate time to complete the recommended course of vaccinations.
Important information you should know:
- Many common vaccines need to be given 4-6 weeks before you travel
- It takes a few weeks for the vaccinations to become effective and provide protection
- For some vaccines, more than one dose is required
- The vaccinations are not always in stock, and may have to be ordered for you, so it may be several days before the vaccine is available to give to you
Can I get a vaccine for yellow fever?
Unfortunately, we cannot provide yellow fever vaccination via this service. If you need this, please consult with your local GP or travel medicine clinic. (This can only be administered by a designated yellow fever clinic).
What do I need for a travel health assessment with Care on Call?
Details of your medical history
- An up-to-date list of your current medications
- Information about your planned trip (destination, duration, activities)
- Details of your previous vaccines (if possible)
- Valid photographic ID
Please note, if the doctor assessing your request needs additional information they will send you a message via your secure patient account.
What side effects might I experience after I receive my vaccinations?
Vaccinations are generally well-tolerated. If side effects do occur, they are usually mild and settle quickly.
Localised side effects are common:
- Swelling at the injection site
Generalised side effects are uncommon and include:
- Fever (>38°)
Anaphylaxis is a severe potentially life-threatening allergic reaction that starts very rapidly (seconds to minutes). It is a medical emergency and is a very rare but potentially serious reaction to any vaccine.
Hypersensitivity reactions of the skin (swelling and redness of arm from shoulder to elbow) are caused by an immune response and can occur following some vaccinations, particularly after more than one dose. This usually starts 2-8 hours after the vaccine has been given, and resolves without treatment in time. This is also very rare.
- Nausea/ vomiting
- A significant & persistent skin rash
For full details please read the information leaflet that comes with your medication before you start it.
When do I start the anti-malaria medication and how long do I need to take it?
This is different for each anti-malaria medication and also depends on how long you will be in a high-risk malaria zone.
- Malarone is started 1-2 days before entering a high-risk malaria zone. It is continued for the duration of your stay and then for a further 7 days when you leave the malaria zone.
You take it once daily, with food. If you miss a dose or have vomiting within one hour of taking it, take another tablet as soon as possible and carry on taking your daily tablet.
- Doxycycline is started 1-2 days before entering a high-risk malaria zone. It is continued for the duration of your stay and then for a further 28 days after you leave the malaria zone.
Take one daily, on an empty stomach with a full glass of water. Remain upright (sitting/ standing) for 1 hour after taking it.
Avoid calcium, magnesium, aluminium, zinc and iron for 1-2 hours before and after taking this medication as these can interfere with absorption. (this includes vitamin supplements and dairy products). If you miss a dose, take it as soon as you remember.
What anti-malaria medications can you prescribe?
We can issue prescriptions for two anti-malarial medications via this service:
Malarone (combination of atovaquone & proguanil)
- Vibramycin (Doxycycline)
These MUST ALWAYS be used in combination with general measures to avoid getting bitten by mosquitos.
The medication recommended depends on several things: where you are travelling to, the duration of your trip, your medical history and sometimes personal preference. Both doxycycline and malarone have some potentially serious interactions with other medications, therefore, it is very important that you tell us all the medications you are taking, so we can ensure safe prescribing. You should never take any medication that has caused an allergic reaction.
Malarone should not be used if you have significant kidney disease (your kidney function is significantly reduced).
It is generally tolerated well, and side effects are uncommon. Dizziness, headache, skin reactions, and tummy upset (diarrhoea, vomiting, nausea) do sometimes occur.
For full details please read the patient information leaflet that comes with your medication before you start it.
Doxycycline should be avoided if you have significant liver disease (your liver function is reduced), or certain medical conditions such as lupus (SLE), Myasthenia gravis, porphyria, narrowing of your oesophagus or raised intracranial pressure.
Common side effects include heartburn/ indigestion, nausea, vomiting, diarrhoea and abdominal pain.
Doxycycline causes photosensitivity and will make your skin more sensitive to sunlight (you will burn more easily in the sun). Ensure you have appropriate protective clothing to cover your skin and always wear a high-factor sunscreen.
Some women will experience vaginal thrush when taking this, especially for a prolonged time.
If you develop the following symptoms you should stop this medication and seek URGENT medical advice:
A persistent headache with blurred vision/ loss of vision and ntime to take the next dose, then skip the missed dose – do not take 2 doses together.
Make sure you complete the prescribed course of treatment, whichever anti-malarial medication you are taking.
How can I avoid getting mosquito bites?
Malaria is spread by mosquitoes. If you do not get bitten, you will not get malaria. To reduce the risk of getting Malaria, you should take the following general precautions:
- Take extra care after sunset. If you are out at night wear long-sleeved clothing and long trousers
- Use insecticide sprays (e.g. Permethrin) on clothes as mosquitoes can bite through thin layers of clothing. AVOID spraying insecticide on the skin!
- Spray pesticides in the room (especially beneath bedside lockers and other bedroom furniture), burning pyrethroid coils, and heating insecticide-coated tablets all help to repel mosquitoes
- Use an insect repellent (ideally one that contains DEET) on areas of skin that are exposed
- Strongly consider keeping windows closed if you are staying somewhere that does not have insect screens
- Use mosquito nets when sleeping (spray insecticide on the net)
Ultrasound devices, garlic and vitamin B DO NOT protect against mosquito bites.
Can you give me a summary of the important malaria facts?
Unfortunately, there is no vaccine for malaria. It is a serious and potentially fatal disease.
- Not all anti-malaria treatments are suitable for all high-risk areas. Check the Fit For Travel site for specific information on malaria in the area you are travelling to.
- Things change – the treatment you used for the same area in the past may not be suitable now. Always seek advice for each new trip.
- Anti-malaria medications should ALWAYS be used along with general measures to avoid mosquito bites. If you develop malaria symptoms when travelling, or when you return home, you must seek URGENT medical attention (even if you have been using anti-malaria medications). Remember, you are at risk from malaria for up to 1 year after you return from a high-risk malaria zone (the greatest risk is within the first 3 months). If you become unwell with a temperature within one year of travelling, seek urgent medical assessment and make sure to inform the doctor about your travel history.
How much do travel vaccinations cost?
Below is some information on approximate costs of the travel vaccinations we prescribe. It is important to be aware that these prices can vary between pharmacies.
The payment for the vaccinations is made directly to the pharmacy when you attend your appointment.
Price Per Dose (approx.)
Usual No. of Doses
Diphtheria, Tetanus & Polio (combined)
Hepatitis A + Hepatitis B (combined)
Hepatitis A + Typhoid (combined)
Tick Borne Encephalitis
2 / 3***
*The primary course of diphtheria, tetanus and polio (DTP) is part of the standard childhood immunisation programme in Ireland. If you have received the primary course, you may need a booster of one dose. If you have not received a primary course previously, you may require additional vaccinations
**Primary course, excludes booster
***The appropriate dosage regime will depend on travel dates and will be advised during the travel health consultation with your doctor