dont have a lot to worry about health-wise on a trip to Sydney. Hygiene standards
are high, hospitals are modern, and doctors and dentists are all well educated. No
vaccinations are needed to enter the country unless you have been in a yellow fever danger
zonethat is, South America or Africain the past six days.
Ask your doctor to recommend treatments for common problems like
travel sickness, insomnia, jet lag, constipation, and diarrhea. Drink plenty of water on
the plane as the air-conditioning dehydrates you quickly.
WHAT TO DO IF YOU GET SICK AWAY FROM HOME
If you worry about getting sick away from home, you may want to
consider medical travel insurance (see the section on insurance). In most cases, however,
your existing health plan will provide all the coverage you need. Be sure to carry your
identification card in your wallet.
If you suffer from a chronic illness, consult your doctor before
your departure. For conditions like epilepsy, diabetes, or heart problems, wear a Medic
Alert Identification Tag (tel. 800/825-3785; www.medicalert.org), which will
immediately alert doctors to your condition and give them access to your records through
Medic Alerts 24-hour hot line. Membership is U.S.$35, then U.S.$15 for annual
Pack prescription medications in your carry-on luggage. Carry
written prescriptions in generic, not brand-name form, and dispense all prescription
medications from their original labeled vials. Also bring along copies of your
prescriptions in case you lose your pills or run out. Usually a three-month supply is the
maximum quantity of prescription drugs you are permitted to carry in Australia, so if you
are carrying large amounts of medication, contact the Australian embassy or consulate in
your home country to check that your supply does not exceed the maximum. If you need more
medication while youre in Australia, you will need to get an Australian doctor to
write the prescription for you.
If you wear contact lenses, pack an extra pair in case you lose
Contact the International Association for Medical Assistance
to Travelers (IAMAT) (tel. 716/754-4883 in the U.S. or 516/836-0102 in Canada;
www.sentex.net/~iamat). This organization offers tips on travel and health concerns in the
countries youll be visiting, and lists many local English-speaking doctors.
Membership is free. The United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
(tel. 404/639-3311; www.cdc.gov) provides up-to-date information on necessary
vaccines and health hazards by region or country. By mail, their booklet is $20 (call tel.
202/512-1800 to order it); on the Internet, its free. When youre abroad,
any local consulate can provide a list of area doctors who speak English, which just about
all of them do in Australia. If you do get sick, you may want to ask the concierge at your
hotel to recommend a local doctoreven his or her own. If you cant find a
doctor who can help you right away, try the emergency room at the local hospital. Doctors
are listed under "M" for Medical Practitioners in the Australian Yellow Pages.
Warning: Sunshine May Be Hazardous To Your Health