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Medical checklist and vaccines

Medical checklist and vaccines

As long as you stay up-to-date with your vaccinations and take basic preventive measures, you’re unlikely to succumb to most of the possible health hazards. While Tanzania has an impressive selection of tropical diseases on offer, it’s more likely you’ll get a bout of diarrhoea or a cold than a more exotic malady. The main exception to this is malaria, which is a real risk throughout much of the country. Road accidents are the other main threat to your health. Never travel at night, and choose buses or private transport over dalla-dallas (minibuses) to minimise the risk.

Before You Go


  • Get a check-up from your dentist and your doctor if you have any regular medication or chronic illness, such as high blood pressure or asthma.
  • Organise spare contact lenses and glasses.
  • Get a first-aid and medical kit together; arrange necessary vaccinations.
  • Consider registering with the International Association for Medical Advice to Travellers (, which provides directories of certified doctors.
  • If you’ll be spending much time in remote areas, consider doing a first-aid course (contact the Red Cross or St John Ambulance) or attending a remote medicine first-aid course, such as that offered by the Royal Geographical Society (
  • Carry medications in their original (labelled) containers.
  • If carrying syringes or needles, have a physician’s letter documenting their medical necessity.

Recommended Vaccinations

Regardless of your destination, the World Health Organization ( recommends that all travellers be covered for the following.

  • diphtheria
  • tetanus
  • measles
  • mumps
  • rubella
  • polio
  • hepatitis B

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (, the following vaccinations are (also) recommended for Tanzania:

  • hepatitis A
  • hepatitis B
  • rabies
  • typhoid
  • boosters for tetanus, diphtheria and measles

While a yellow fever vaccination certificate is not officially required to enter Tanzania unless you’re coming from an infected area, carrying one is advised.