First of all we have to state that the following is only what we decided to take and do and in no way a general guideline concerning staying healthy in Africa. We talked to two different doctors before departing and were being very well taken care of so if you plan something similar don’t hesitate to speak to an expert before you leave.
Vaccinations we took:
– Hepatitis A
– Hepatitis B
Was difficult to get in Germany as it is not being kept in stock anymore. Had to be ordered from France and took two weeks to arrive. Three doses are necessary which we took over the course of three weeks.
– Yellow Fever
Very important as proof of vaccination is required for entrance to many African countries.
We were lucky enough to have travel vaccinations covered by our health insurance. We ended up paying around 1000€ in total and could claim 90% of the costs back so at least if you are living in Germany check beforehand which vaccinations are being covered for by your insurance company.
We decided to buy enough of the antibiotic Doxycyclin to last for 700 days of being in areas of high risk of Malaria. Malarone would have been way too expensive and Doxycyclin even though not being licensed as malaria prophylaxis in Germany is not known to have severe side effects when taken over a longer period of time. That said it is obviously never good to take an antibiotic when not absolutely necessary but compared to the higher risk of contracting Malaria it is well worth it in our eyes. To our knowledge the German Defense Forces are using Doxycyclin as well when being stationed in the tropics. We got our stack for half the asking price when explaining our situation to the pharmacist.
Apart from chemical prophylaxis it is most important to avoid being bitten by mosquitos in the first place by wearing long clothing, using mosquito nets and using insect repellant.
We decided for a long term travel insurance by the ADAC which also issued our Carnet de Passage. It turned out to be the best offer we could find for up to 24 months running time.
– Fenistil against bites and stings of insects
– Sorentol Hydrocort against skin irritations
– Paracetamol against pain and fever
– Ibuprofen against pain and fever
– Betaisodona for disinfection of wounds
– Imodium Akut against diarrhea
– Canesten against fungal infections
– Bepanthen and disinfection spray for smaller cuts and wounds
– Electrolytes against dehydration
– eye drops
– Asthma spray for Jasmine
– first aid kit containing scissors, bandages, plasters
– infusions, needles and tubing in case of emergency
– sun screen and after sun
– Anti Brumm Forte as insect repellant