About travel and border health service

If you are not prepared, international travel can be hazardous to your health. The first step in preparing for international travel is to consult with a travel health service center. The World Health Organization recommends that travelers consult with a travel health professional at least 2 weeks before departure.

The Travel and Border Health Service Directorate at Ethiopian Public Health Institute ensures the existences of the recommended International Health Regulation (IHR-2005) principles concerning travel-related diseases of public health interest.

Travel Health Services include

  • Consultation:
    • The health professionals will assess your individual needs taking into account each destination on your itinerary, personal medical needs and so on. Based on WHO latest information issued, the health professionals will provide a personal recommendation.
  • Vaccinations:  travel related vaccine service has two categories
    • Recommended vaccine:Not a must to have but taking a vaccination recommended and this include the majority of travel vaccines.
    • Required vaccines:These are required by a country for entry in order to protect the health of their citizens form travelers who may import the disease. Yellow fever, meningitis and polio are the most common required vaccines.

Information For Travellers

What is Ebola virus disease (EVD) 

Ebola virus disease is a deadly hemorrhagic disease caused by Virus called Ebola virus. The disease often causes high fever and bleeding from various body holes. The current outbreaks of Ebola viral disease in Uganda is caused by species Sudan Ebolavirus disease. Outbreaks by the species of Sudan virus first reported in southern Sudan in June 1976, since then seven outbreaks, four in Uganda and three in Sudan have been reported.

The virus is introduced into the human population through close contact with the blood, secretions, organs or other bodily fluids of infected animals such as fruit bats, chimpanzees, gorillas, monkeys, forest antelope or porcupines found ill or dead or in the rainforest.
The virus then spreads through human-to-human transmission via direct contact (through broken skin or mucous membranes) with either blood or body fluids of a person who is sick with or has died from EVD or objects that have been contaminated with body fluids (like blood, feces, vomit) from a person sick with EVD or the body of a person who died from EVD.

The incubation period ranges from 2 to 21 days. People infected with Sudan virus cannot spread the disease until they develop symptoms, and they remain infectious as long as their blood contains the virus.

What are the symptoms of Ebola?

Symptoms of EVD can be sudden and include fever, fatigue, muscle pain, headache, and sore throat later followed by vomiting, diarrhea, rash, symptoms of impaired kidney and liver function. In some cases, the patient might present both internal and external bleeding (for example, bleeding from the gums, or blood in the stools).

The diagnosis of EVD can be difficult, as early nonspecific manifestation of the disease may mimic other infectious diseases such as malaria, typhoid fever and meningitis. Confirmation is made using numerous diagnostic methods including RT-PCR.

Prevention and treatment of EVD

Supportive care – rehydration with oral or intravenous fluids – and treatment of specific symptoms improve survival.

There are no licensed vaccines or therapeutics for the prevention and treatment of Sudan virus disease.

Useful tips

  • Ebola is preventable disease, but it kills in a short time.
  • Ebola is a disease that can easily be transmitted from person to person through contact with the body fluids of an infected person.
  • Ebola can be prevented by washing hands regularly with soap and water.
  • Report any suspected cases of Ebola to the nearest health facility
  • While in Ethiopia , for any inquire please call toll free 8335 or visit

What is Monkey Pox?

Monkeypox is a viral zoonosis disease (Animal origin) caused by infection with Monkeypox virus. Previously Monkeypox occurs in central and West Africa but the current outbreak is occurring around the world in areas where Monkeypox is not usually found.

The mode of transmission is Human-to-human to animal-to-human transmission. Human-to-human transmition occurs from close contact with respiratory secretions and skin lesions of an infected person or recently contaminated objects. Transmission can also occur via the placenta from mother to fetus or during close contact during and after birth.

Animal-to-human transmission can occur by bite or scratch of infected animals and from direct contact with the blood or other bodily fluids and lesions of infected animals.

Symptoms of Monkey Pox

People infected with Monkeypox develop a rash that can look like pimples or blisters and the rash may be painful or itchy, similar to those seen in the past in smallpox patients, although it is clinically less severe.

The symptoms of Monkeypox can include Fever, Headache, Muscle and back pain, swollen lymph nodes, Chills, Exhaustion and Respiratory symptoms (e.g. sore throat, nasal congestion, or cough). The illness typically lasts from 6 to 13 days but can range from 5 to 21 days.

Who is at risk?

Anyone in close contact with a person with Monkeypox can get it and should take steps to protect themselves.

Prevention and treatment Measures

There is no specific vaccine and treatment developed for Monkeypox but some clinical studies demonstrated that Smallpox vaccine is about 85% effective in preventing the disease.

Travelers can protect themselves against infection by taking the following steps.

  • Avoid close, skin-to-skin contact including kissing, hugging, or having sex with people who have a rash that looks like Monkeypox.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water or use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer; especially before eating or touching your face and after you use the bathroom.
  • In Central and West Africa, avoid contact with animals that can spread Monkeypox virus, usually rodents and primates.

Useful tips

  • If you have symptoms of Monkeypox or had close contact with someone who has Monkeypox, talk to your healthcare provider.
  • If you have symptoms, do not travel until you recover or confirm you do not have Monkeypox.

While in Ethiopia , for any inquire please call toll free 8335 or visit

What is yellow fever?

Yellow fever (YF) is a serious illness caused by the YF virus. YF is usually passed on to humans by the bite of an infected mosquito. YF can vary from a flu-like illness that gets better on its own over several days to a severe illness with fever, jaundice (turning yellow), bleeding and organ failure. There is no specific medicine to treat YF. Up to 5% of infected people will die if they are not treated immediately.

Occurrence of YF disease?

The disease in Africa and Latin America in 44 countries. It causes with a estimation of 200,000 illnesses and up to 30,000 deaths, and the data shows the YF proved to be found in some places in our country.

The main symptoms of yellow fever

Many people do not experience symptoms, but when these do occur, the most common are:

  • Fever,
  • Muscle pain with prominent backache,
  • Headache,
  • Loss of appetite, and
  • Nausea or vomiting.

A small percentage of patients, however, enter a second phase, more toxic phase within 24 hours of recovering from initial symptoms. High fever returns and several body systems are affected, usually the liver and the kidneys. In this phase people are likely to develop jaundice (yellowing of the skin and eyes, hence the name ‘yellow fever’), dark urine and abdominal pain with vomiting. Bleeding can occur from the mouth, nose, eyes or stomach.

How to Prevent?

  • Prevention of mosquito bites
    • Wearing long -sleeved shirts and
    • Insect repellents,
  • Vaccination
    • The travelers should have the vaccine at least 10 days before you travel
    • The vaccine provides lifelong protection

Note: Travelers to YF areas should do both things

What is the Treatment?

A person who feels the above symptoms should immediately go to the health center and get the necessary professional advice and examination. If a person infected with yellow fever does not get early diagnosis and medical help, it can lead to death.

Useful tips

  • Take the vaccine before Travel
  • Any persons with high fever and yellow eyes should seek to a health facility as they may have yellow fever; Notify the nearest health office or governing body immediately.
  • While in Ethiopia , for any inquire please call toll free 8335 or visit