Book review of "Travel Vaccination Certificate Book and Pre-Travel Guide" by John Skala, Travellers Medical Service, Brisbane, Australia

Leggat, Peter (2008) Book review of "Travel Vaccination Certificate Book and Pre-Travel Guide" by John Skala, Travellers Medical Service, Brisbane, Australia. Travel Medicine and Infectious Disease, 6 (5). p. 328.

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Abstract

[Extract] The provision of written health and safety information for travellers has become an integral part of supporting the advice given during pre-travel health consultations. This may take the form of brochures, information sheets, and printouts from the Internet or indeed travel health booklets such as Travel Vaccination Certificate Book and Pre-Travel Guide, formerly Your Passport to Travel Health.¹ Travel Vaccination Certificate Book and Pre-Travel Guide is based on the International Certificate of Vaccination or Prophylaxis (ICVP),² which has recently superseded the International Certificate of Vaccination (ICV), but has strategically inserted health information for the traveller.

Travel Vaccination Certificate Book and Pre-Travel Guide includes notes on travel advice, passports and consular advice, as per the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT)³; notes on yellow fever, a travel health checklist, the ICVP, notes on malaria, notes on how to prevent malaria and dengue fever, notes on rabies, including a detailed rabies pre-exposure and post-exposure vaccination record; a chart giving the duration of protection of vaccines; and a section for detailing important medical history. It is curious that the nomenclature on the cover is not consistent with the ICVP. In addition, there is no obvious date of publication on the booklet and the year of publication has been estimated from discussions with the author.

The Travel Vaccination Certificate Book and Pre-Travel Guide is obviously directed to travellers and retains the size of the ICV, hence could be easily carried with other travel documents. It no longer appears to come standard with a durable protective yellow plastic cover, as in the previous edition. None-the-less, it is as robust as any ICV or ICVP. In order to keep the booklet compact, it has omitted the A–Z of travel health issues, which would need to be provided by a separate publication. None-the-less, it may be useful to provide other essential advice for the traveller, such as a ready reference chart reminding travellers of lifesaving first aid procedures and an expanded proformas documenting travellers' medications. The inclusion of a key travel advisory website is a significant advance on the previous edition and appears to be the result of a partnership with DFAT. Perhaps other useful websites could be added, such as that of the Australian Travel Health Advisory Group.⁴

The Travel Vaccination Certificate Book and Pre-Travel Guide gives coverage to issues not covered in an ICV alone. It is not a substitute for up-to-date pre-travel health advice on a range of health and safety topics important to the traveller or those seeking assistance for potentially life-threatening conditions from a qualified source. The Travel Vaccination Certificate Book and Pre-Travel Guide is not without some competition, which may be used as adjunctive resources; however, there are few comparable compact publications.5 The booklet does provide an exceptionally practical low-cost reference for the traveller as an adjunct to appropriate health advice received before travel.

Item ID: 25127
Item Type: Article (Book Review)
Keywords: travel medicine, practice, guide, vaccination
ISSN: 1873-0442
Date Deposited: 22 Feb 2013 06:17
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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