Travel Diseases 2023

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Last reviewed
June 2, 2023
Content Overview
Vaccination prevents yellow fever, polio, measles, mpox, and dengue diseases in June 2023.

Travel Diseases June 2023

Vaccine-preventable disease outbreaks, such as polio, yellow fever, Ebola, measles, and cholera, disrupt international travel in 2023, says the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and World Health Organization (WHO). Neglected tropical diseases (NTD) are mainly prevalent in tropical areas. As of 2023, about 47 countries had eliminated at least one NTD. However, the WHO estimates that more than 1.7 billion people annually require treatment for at least one NTD. On January 29, 2023, the WHO published the Global Report on neglected tropical diseases 2023.

The WHO recently launched an integrated strategic plan, the Global Arbovirus Initiative, to tackle emerging and re-emerging Arthropod-Borne viruses (arboviruses) such as Dengue, Yellow fever, Chikungunya, and Zika viruses that are public health threats in tropical areas where approximately 3.9 billion people live. The WHO and Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) publish a weekly Epidemiological Update for Dengue, Chikungunya, and Zika. And

As of June 2023, the U.S. CDC published Travel Advisories and digital maps indicating vaccine-preventable diseases in various countries. And the WHO's vaccine-preventable disease update was issued in 2023.

Travel Diseases

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved vaccines targeting travel-related diseases:

Chikungunya: Chikungunya is a viral disease transmitted to humans by infected mosquitoes with the chikungunya virus (CHIKV). Chikungunya outbreaks are primarily found in Africa, Asia, Brazil, and the Indian subcontinent. As of 2023, the U.S. FDA has not approved a CHIKV preventive vaccine.

Cholera: Cholera is an acute diarrhoeal disease that can kill within hours if left untreated. Currently, there are WHO-prequalified oral cholera vaccines (OCV), such as DUKORAL®. And VaxChora® may become available in the U.S. in later 2023.

Dengue: Dengue is a viral infection transmitted to humans through the bite of infected mosquitoes. There are four Dengue serotypes, and it is possible to be infected four times. There are two dengue vaccines in use worldwide; Dengvaxia and QDENGA®. Outbreaks in Florida have been confirmed in 2022 and 2023.

Ebola: Ebola virus disease is a rare but often fatal illness in humans. The Ervebo® vaccine was approved by the U.S. FDA in 2020. However, as of April 2023, no Sudan ebolavirus vaccine has been approved by the FDA.

Hepatitis: Hepatitis is an inflammation of the liver. The five main strains of hepatitis viruses include hepatitis A, hepatitis B, hepatitis C, hepatitis D, and hepatitis E. The CDC updated hepatitis vaccination schedules on February 2023 for children, adolescents, and adults. 

Influenza: Various influenza viruses continually spread worldwide. There are several FDA-approved flu shots available in 2023.

Japanese Encephalitis: JE is a severe virus that spreads to people through the bites of infected mosquitos. There are FDA-approved JE vaccines available in the U.S.

Lassa Fever: Lassa virus is an acute viral infection that originates and spreads through contact with a typical African rat. As of 2023, the U.S. FDA had not approved a Lassa fever vaccine.

Lyme Disease: Lyme disease is a tickborne disease common in Europe and the U.S., transmitted to humans through the bite of infected ticks. No vaccine has been approved in 2023.

Malaria: Malaria is a life-threatening disease caused by parasites transmitted to people through the bites of infected female Anopheles mosquitoes. Malaria is preventable with the Mosquirix (RTS,S/AS01) and R21/Matrix-M malaria vaccines. These malaria vaccines are available in Africa, not the U.S.

Marburg: Marburg virus disease (MVD) is a severe disease in humans caused by the marburgvirus. There are recent MVD outbreaks in Africa. As of 2023, the FDA has not approved a vaccine targeting MVD.

Measles: Measles is a highly contagious, serious disease caused by a virus. Safe vaccines (MMR-II and Priorix) are available throughout the U.S. Measles is a risk to international travelers visiting countries such as India.

Meningococcal: Vaccines can help prevent meningococcal disease, which is any type of illness caused by Neisseria meningitidis bacteria. There are two types of meningococcal vaccines available in the U.S.

MERS: Middle East Respiratory Syndrome vaccines are not approved as of May 2023, but several vaccine candidates are conducting clinical trials.

Mpox: Mpox disease is caused by the mpox virus, and outbreaks continue in 2023. Authorized vaccines such as JYNNEOS® are offered in various countries in 2023.

Polio: Polio is a highly infectious disease caused by types of poliovirus. There is no cure for polio, but vaccines can prevent it. Canada, Israel, the U.K., and the state of New York recently discovered poliovirus in wastewater and increased polio vaccination offerings.

Rabies: Rabies is a vaccine-preventable viral disease in more than 150 countries and territories. Rabies is present on all continents, except Antarctica, with over 95% of human deaths occurring in the Asia and African regions. It is spread to people and animals through bites or scratches, usually via saliva. Dogs are responsible for up to 99% of rabies transmission to humans. 

Rift Valley Fever: Rift Valley Fever is a viral epidemic illness prevalent in Africa and can be fatal in humans. No vaccines are available for human use as of 2023. The ChAdOx1 RVF vaccine candidate was found safe, well tolerated, and immunogenic when administered as a single dose in this University of Oxford phase 1 study population.

Rotavirus: Four rotavirus vaccines have been prequalified by the World Health Organization for use worldwide.

Tickborne Encephalitis: Tickborne encephalitis virus is a member of the family Flaviviridae. Approximately 10,000–12,000 clinical cases of tickborne encephalitis are reported each year. FDA-approved vaccines are also available. There are currently four available vaccines.

Typhoid: Typhoid fever is a life-threatening infection caused by the bacterium Salmonella Typhi. It is usually spread through contaminated food or water. One FDA-approved vaccine has been used for many years to prevent typhoid.

Tuberculosis: Tuberculosis (TB) is a potentially severe infectious disease mainly affecting the lungs of children. The Bacille Calmette-Guérin (BCG) vaccine helps prevent TB. 

West Nile Virus: Phoenix, Arizona, has become a West Nile Virus (WNV) hot spot in the U.S. in 2023 The U.S. FDA has not authorized a WNV preventive vaccine.

Yellow Fever: Yellow fever is an acute viral hemorrhagic disease transmitted by infected mosquitoes. A small proportion of patients who contract the virus develop severe symptoms, and approximately half die within 7 to 10 days. Yellow fever vaccines (FY-Vax® and Stamaril®) are available worldwide.

Zika: Zika virus outbreaks continue in 2023. However, there are no approved Zika vaccines available as of May 2023.

Travel Vaccine Appointments 2023

Request a pre-departure travel vaccination advisory appointment with a healthcare professional at this weblink.