Mandatory and recommended Brazil vaccinations
No travel vaccinations are required for a stay in Brazil. Nevertheless, we recommend some vaccinations for personal health protection. The risk of infection varies depending on the destination of the trip.
- Yellow fever: Vaccination against yellow fever is strongly recommended, as unvaccinated vacationers in the areas of the state of Rio de Janeiro have been infected in the past. The risk of infection has increased particularly in the states of São Paulo, Paraná, Santa Catarina, Minas Gerais and Mato Grosso since 2016. The yellow fever immunization must take place up to 10 days before departure.
- Standard vaccinations: make an appointment with your family doctor and present your vaccination card. This should always be up to date, regardless of the travel destination. Many disregard the second vaccination against measles, which is extremely important.
- Travel vaccinations: hepatitis A (against germs from contaminated water when washing vegetables and fruit or on hands), hepatitis B (when in close contact with the population), rabies (the vaccine is not always available as quickly as it is needed after an animal bite) and possibly typhoid.
- Zika virus: Although no new diseases have been published at the moment, travel to Brazil for pregnant women and those wanting to become pregnant is only recommended in emergencies. There is no therapy against the infection and no prophylaxis either. The virus spread particularly strongly between October 2015 and May 2016 and is transmitted by the bite of an infected mosquito of the genus Aedes. Men who have returned from an area of transmission for less than six months can infect women with their semen. You should avoid pregnancy six months after your return.
Malaria in Brazil: Provinces and Areas at Risk
There is a year-round risk of malaria in Brazil. Depending on the travel destination, the chances of infection are different:
- Particularly high: In the provinces of Acre (in the border area with Perù), Rondônia (in the border area with Bolivia) and Roraima (in the border area with Venezuela / Guyana)
- Moderate risk of malaria: In the provinces of Amapà, Amazonas, Maranhao (W), Mato Grosso (N), Parà (except Belèm City), Tocantins (W) and the outskirts of the cities of Pôrto Velho, Boa Vista, Macapà Manaus, Santarém, Maraba, Rio Branco and Cruzeiro do Sul.
- No risk of malaria: East coast including Fortaleza, Recife, Iguaçu and most city centersAn emergency medication (stand-by), which you take if you have flu symptoms with suspected malaria, is a must in the first-aid kit. The incubation period of the malaria virus is 5 days, which means that self-medication can be dispensed with for extremely short stays in Brazil, because holidaymakers have then already returned to Germany and will respond to the pathogen from the 6th day of the earliest infection can be tested.
Health measures for Brazil vacationers
- The gray-brown Anopheles mosquito bites in the vast majority of cases between 10:00 p.m. and 2:00 a.m., so you should only stay in the risk areas during this time in an emergency and practice exposure prophylaxis (long clothing, repellents).
- The repellent with the active ingredients DEET, Icaridin or Bayrepel® should be applied in the late afternoon. Sunscreen is one of them.
- Sweat and fragrances attract mosquitoes: therefore always shower regularly and avoid using perfume.
The mosquito repellent must be applied every two hours in warm and humid conditions.
The Aedes mosquito, which transmits the dengue fever virus, also bites during the day: therefore protect against mosquito bites during the day.
- Recommended DEET active ingredient concentration: Less than 20% is not recommended: 1 to 3 hours effect, 30%: up to 6 hours effect, 50%: up to 12 hours effect – more than 50% DEET active ingredient concentration is not recommended and may have health consequences dragging yourself (skin irritation, changes in liver function values and disorders of the nervous system)
Sleep only with mosquito nets!
- Drinking bottled mineral water protects sensitive people from diarrhea (not everyone reacts in the same way to tap water. In case of doubt, well or tap water is not recommended for drinking unless it is boiled and filtered.
- The following applies to food: leave raw, uncooked and unpeeled food (fruit, meat, eggs), avoid open meals such as buffets, avoid raw vegetables if it is unclear whether they have been washed with fresh, uncontaminated tap water.
- A good food and drink safety guide can be downloaded here.
A foreign health insurance for Brazil is mandatory in any case!
Safe and healthy through Brazil? With a tour guide you always have a competent contact person!