Vaccination FAQs

  • Medical Author:

    Dr. Eddie Hooker is currently an Assistant Professor in the Department of Health Services Administration at Xavier University in Cincinnati, Ohio. He is also an Associate Clinical Professor in the Department of Emergency Medicine at the University of Louisville and at Wright State University. His areas of expertise include emergency medicine, epidemiology, health-services management, and public health.

  • Medical Editor: Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD
    Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD

    Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD

    Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD, is a U.S. board-certified Anatomic Pathologist with subspecialty training in the fields of Experimental and Molecular Pathology. Dr. Stöppler's educational background includes a BA with Highest Distinction from the University of Virginia and an MD from the University of North Carolina. She completed residency training in Anatomic Pathology at Georgetown University followed by subspecialty fellowship training in molecular diagnostics and experimental pathology.

View the Travel Health and Vaccines Slideshow Pictures

Do people need any additional vaccinations for foreign travel?

There are a number of vaccines that are not routinely given in the U.S. that are recommended for foreign travel. Which vaccines a person needs completely depends on the country to which he or she is traveling. The CDC has a web site that is constantly updated with recommendations for vaccines ( People can learn about recommended vaccines by simply navigating to the country they plan to visit. These vaccines can then be obtained from many local health departments or travel clinics.

Travelers going to sub-Saharan Africa and tropical South America are required by International Health Regulations to have yellow fever vaccination. All other vaccines are simply recommended to protect the traveler. Common vaccines given for foreign travel include hepatitis A vaccine, hepatitis B vaccine, and typhoid vaccine. U.S. citizens who have not received their recommended (routine) vaccinations (Tdap, MMR, polio, etc.) should make sure that they get all routinely recommended vaccines before traveling. Many of these diseases are still very common in other parts of the world. For instance, people going to Mecca on the Haj are required to be vaccinated against meningitis.

Where can people find additional information on immunizations?

  1. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention web site for vaccines and immunizations at This is updated annually in the fall of the year.
  2. Epidemiology and Prevention of Vaccine-Preventable Diseases: The Pink Book: Course Textbook Updated 12th Edition (May 2012) at
  3. Recommendations on immunization for health-care workers at
  6. Traveler information:

Medically reviewed by a Board Certified Family Practice Physician


United States. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. "Immunization & Pregnancy." <>.

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 9/25/2015

Subscribe to MedicineNet's Newsletters

Get the latest health and medical information delivered direct to your inbox!

By clicking Submit, I agree to the MedicineNet's Terms & Conditions & Privacy Policy and understand that I may opt out of MedicineNet's subscriptions at any time.

  • Vaccinations - Indications

    Have you followed the standard recommendations to vaccinate you or your children? Why or why not?

  • Vaccinations - Contraindications

    Are you a person who has a condition that prevents you from being vaccinated? Please describe it.


Health Solutions From Our Sponsors