You have planned a nice long journey. Really something to live by! There are many things to consider, such as booking accommodations and packing the right luggage. But also important: do you need vaccinations? For example, if you are going to Bali, Thailand or South Africa, chances are you will need a number of vaccinations. Unfortunately, these expensive injections are not reimbursed as standard. Fortunately, you can save a lot of money with the right additional health insurance.
Avoid exotic surprises
Nothing is more annoying than getting sick during your vacation. In some cases this can even be very dangerous. Good precautions such as vaccinations are therefore indispensable. During a vaccination you will receive (part of) a bacteria or virus through a needle. Your body then produces antibodies, so that you cannot get the disease itself or are much less bothered by it.
Whether you need vaccinations depends on your holiday destination. Especially in countries in Asia, Africa and Central and South America there are infectious diseases that you can vaccinate against in advance. Hygiene is often not optimal in these countries, which increases the risk of disease. Because we often cannot withstand this, vaccinations are very important.
A number of diseases that you can vaccinate against are, for example:
- Hepatitis A.
- Hepatitis B
Some of these vaccinations have a lifelong effect. For other vaccinations you have to get them again after a certain period.
On to the GP or GGD
If you are going on holiday to an area with health risks, it is best to contact your doctor or the GGD. Your doctor or a specialist from the GGD will ask you where you are going on holiday and when you are leaving. Then a risk assessment is made and you receive advice. Some vaccinations are not compulsory, but are recommended, such as the vaccination against rabies (rabies). For example, are you planning to watch orangutans in the jungle? Then it may be advisable to get vaccinated against rabies.
As soon as you know which vaccinations you need, make an appointment at the GGD, or at another location where the travel vaccinations will be given. For example, you can also contact a regional vaccination agency.
Get a vaccination from a regional vaccination agency or from a doctor? Make sure that they are affiliated with the National Coordination Center for Travel Advice (LCR). Then they have access to the most up-to-date information. Not every GP has such a subscription.
Do you have little time to go out on your own? It is often also possible to have travel vaccinations carried out at home by an expert doctor. You can then indicate when this suits you best. Please note: some health insurers only reimburse you if you get the vaccination from, for example, the GGD.
Insured for vaccinations
The costs for vaccinations vary per disease. In many risk areas you have to vaccinate against multiple diseases, which can increase costs. For example, are you going on vacation to Thailand? Then it is possible that you are a few hundred euros lighter after the necessary injections. For an overview of the rates, please visit the GGD website.
Vaccinations are not part of the basic health insurance package. You can, however, get additional insurance for this. This can save you money, but in some cases you can save money by paying for it yourself. For example, do you only need one or two vaccinations? Then it may be cheaper to pay for this yourself, instead of paying a premium for a year.
Are you planning to travel next year and are you considering switching health insurance? Then comparing your health insurance is a smart choice. In this overview of reimbursements for vaccinations you can see exactly which insurers reimburse what. When making your choice, also pay close attention to the monthly premium and coverage. The cover is not always 100 percent: some insurers only reimburse vaccinations for a limited number of illnesses.
Also think of malaria pills
In addition to vaccinations in the form of a shot, there are also pills for some tropical diseases. Malaria pills are a well-known example of this. Malaria occurs in countries such as Brazil, Cambodia, Ecuador and India. The advice for protection against malaria differs per country. For example, in some cases it is recommended to take the pills preventively before and during the trip. In other cases (areas with a lower risk), the advice may be to take the pills only when symptoms of the disease actually appear.
Your additional health insurance will in some cases reimburse malaria pills. However, some insurers only reimburse the medicines if you order them from eFarma (an online pharmacy).