Travel health advisory group: activities of a join travel industry and travel medicine group promoting healthy travel

Zwar, N., and Leggat, P.A. (2008) Travel health advisory group: activities of a join travel industry and travel medicine group promoting healthy travel. Annals of the ACTM, 9 (1). p. 26.

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Abstract

Objective: The Australian Travel Health Advisory Group (THAG), established in 1997, is a joint initiative between the travel industry and travel medicine professionals that aims to promote healthy travel amongst travellers. THAG seeks to promote cooperation in improving the health of travellers between the travel industry and travel medicine professionals and to raise awareness of the importance of travel health to the Australian public.

Method: The poster describes the major activities of THAG which include: networking and exchange among groups interested in travel health; commissioning travel health research; promotion of travel health awareness working through travel service providers; public relations activities to increase awareness of travel health risks and the importance of seeking pre-travel health advice and vaccination; and the development of an increasingly popular website to provide travel health information to Australian travellers.

Result: A travel health bookmark developed by THAG has been distributed extensively through travel agents, Qantas Holidays and Youth Hostels Association. Travel health surveys conducted under the auspices by THAG have been presented at the International Society of Travel Medicine (ISTM) conferences and articles focused on hepatitis A and hepatitis B published in the Journal of Travel Medicine. The welltogo.com.au website was developed in 2004; expansion of the content took place in 2005, and in 2007 the interactive World Map was launched (providing health warnings for all regions). The use of the welltogo website has increased rapidly with more than 42,000 visits per year. The Australian Government travel advisory site has a link to welltogo. THAG participated in the 2007 GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) Australian Olympic Committee immunisation campaign, where the Shadow Olympic Team was vaccinated in preparation for Beijing. THAG profiled the welltogo website and provided a spokesperson and research statistics for the campaign. THAG’s professional organisation profile was published in the Travel Medicine and Infectious Disease publication in 2007.

Conclusion: A partnership approach between the travel industry and travel medicine professionals can effectively support a range of activities to promote the health of travelers. The welltogo website is now making an important contribution in providing information to the Australian public on travel health. Interests to declare: The activities of the Travel Health Advisory Group are funded by GlaxoSmithkline Australia.

Item ID: 25107
Item Type: Article (Abstract)
Keywords: travel medicine, professional group, Australia
ISSN: 1448-4706
Date Deposited: 22 Feb 2013 01:38
FoR Codes: 11 MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES > 1117 Public Health and Health Services > 111799 Public Health and Health Services not elsewhere classified @ 100%
SEO Codes: 92 HEALTH > 9204 Public Health (excl. Specific Population Health) > 920499 Public Health (excl. Specific Population Health) not elsewhere classified @ 100%
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