Zimbabwe Health and Safety

Recommended Immunizations

Yellow Fever

Infection caused by a virus carried by monkeys, transmitted through mosquitoes who carry the virus from the monkey to the human. The symptoms a re a short, mild fever often leading to jaundice, failure of the liver and kidneys and eventually death. The vaccine is effective. The vaccination is valid for 10 years and is usually only available in specialist clinics or hospitals. A valid Yellow Fever inoculation certificate is required if arriving from or via an infected area having passed through that area by any other means than a scheduled flight.

Hepatitis A

Hepatitis A, also called ‘infectious hepatitis’ is basically an inflammation of the liver caused by a virus A. The virus is picked up from contaminated food and water. The symptoms are a slight febrile disorder, loss of appetite and jaundice. Almost everyone recovers within about 2 months. Precautions include immunization and avoiding salads, unpeeled fruit, sharing crockery and cutlery.

Malaria

Malaria is a danger in the lowland areas of Northern and Eastern Transvaal and parts of Eastern Natal reaching down to the Tugela River.

Polio

Polio or Poliomyelitis is an infection caused by a virus. It affects the motor neurone cells in the spinal cord mainly. The symptoms are fever and headache, weakness in a group of muscles, then widespread paralysis. Sometimes there is respiratory paralysis and rapid death. There is an effective vaccine taken by mouth.

Tetanus

Tetanus (also known as lockjaw) is a disease caused by infection with ‘clostridium tetani’ which is present in soil and in the intestines of humans and animals. Infection can enter the body via cuts after which bacteria produce a toxin affecting the motor nerve cells in the spinal cord. This is followed by convulsions and muscle spasms. The vaccine is effective and the disease can also be treated by an antitoxin and penicillin.

Typhoid

Typhoid or ‘enteric fever’ is caused by infection with ‘salmonella typhi’. The infection is passed from infected water, milk or food or by people preparing food or drinks. Symptoms are a rapidly fluctuating temperature, drowsiness, diarrhoea, abdominal rash, delirium and coma. Immunization is effective. The disease is treatable with antibiotics.

Food Precautions

Avoid

Unpeeled fruit, badly cooked meat, ice cubes, untreated milk, ice cream if made from untreated milk.

Take

Extra salt if in hot climates.

Drink Precautions

Purify water or make sure it is clean. If you are not sure avoid it. Bottled water, soft drinks (sodas) and beer are widely available.