Health in Zimbabwe for Travelers
Inoculations are NOT required if you are from the West for Zimbabwe, Botswana (Chobe) Namibia (Caprivi)
Matopos Hills - Zimbabwe
Most of your travel service providers will subscribe to MARS and the
chances are your own travel insurance taken out in your resident country
will be linked with MARS to cover any treatment required.
Other Health Tips
Travelers have advised the use of bottled water to avoid any possible stomach complaints
Be sensible about exposure to the sun and the heat in general as this may cause heat stroke or exhaustion – eat salt on your food, drink liquids regularly and wear protective sun creams and clothing.
If you suffer from allergies, bring your own prescriptive medicine. Other useful medical aid kit items to bring along are: antihistamine (insect bites, itches, allergies),
Imodium or equivalent (for diarrhoea) and antiseptic cream (for minor injuries).
AIDS Your biggest chance of contracting HIV/AIDS is through unprotected
Do not use water directly from rivers or dams for drinking, unless you boil it first.
Swimming in rivers or dams exposes you to Bilharzia, unless you can see signboards saying the water is safe and clean for human consumption.
The water in towns, at hotels and in swimming pools, has been treated
and is then safe.
There are pills available for protection against Bilharzia. See a Doctor, or Pharmacist
Cholera acts by releasing a toxin within the intestine. It has to get into your gut via your mouth (not absorbed through skin by bathing or showering) and it has to survive the hostile acidic stomach on the way. If it makes it to the small bowel it is well adapted to survive there; each germ is capable of "swimming" by wiggling its tail to counteract the intestine's propulsive movement which would tend to push it down and out. It is resistant to bile salts and can adhere to the intestinal wall as well. You get it by ingesting it either in water or contaminated food.
The contamination comes from another individual who has cholera - fecal excretement contaminates hands or water supplies and passes the germs along. Washing food in contaminated water is a problem and swallowing water bathing or showering or while brushing teeth can pass it along. Washing hands is very important in preventing it, as is very careful food handling, washing and preparation
Tick-Bite Fever March-April is the worst time as the grass is long and wet.
Avoid being bitten by mosquitoes The old adage rings true “Prevention is better than cure” – therefore the best way to avoid malaria is to avoid being bitten in the first place. Mosquitoes and most other insects are generally active for a few hours around sunset. They can and often do continue to be bothersome throughout the night and are also around in the early morning.
We suggest that you change into longs just before sunset and
spray yourself with the provided repellent
Take prophylaxis in malaria risk areas. Get good advice before you plan your holiday. Take the pills same day each week when weekly, or at the same time of the day if daily. Continue prophylaxis for 4 weeks after your return. Complete the course.
If you, or one of your party, show ‘flu like symptoms’ and signs like body pain, headache and fever develop 7 to 20 days or longer after visiting an endemic area, have a simple blood test done. This check will show if there are any parasites in your blood, and just remember, early treatment rarely leads to complications.
The further away you are from towns and crowded areas the less chance you have of contacting malaria as it is relayed from person to person
Medical insurance You are well advised to obtain medical insurance before arrival. Please
bring any personal medicines that you may require with you, as they
may be hard to find.
Rabies Be wary of strange animals. even stray dogs and cats. If you are bitten, by any animal, it is wise to go straight to a clinic. Rabies may be treated effectively with a course of injections if caught in time
Sunstroke and Sunburn
It is recommended that you wear a broad-rimmed hat, wear sunglasses,
and use A good quality sun-screen cream or lotion.
Snakes Are very common, but hardly ever seen. Puff adders being the most dangerous.They lie in paths and do not move, especially in autumn. Not all snakes are dangerous. So, if you do get bitten by a snake, don’t panic.
If you can, kill the snake for identification purposes, but if that
is not possible then try and remember what the snake looked like.