These are some common questions that we get asked in travel health consultations.
What is Hepatitis B?
Hepatitis B is a virus that is spread by blood and infects and damages the liver. It is the most common blood borne virus worldwide and is a major cause of chronic liver disease and liver cancer. The virus is 50-100 times more infectious than HIV. 
How can I catch Hepatitis B?
The virus is also present in other body fluids e.g. saliva, vaginal fluid and semen. The virus can get in through open wounds ,cuts, scratches and contaminated needles. The virus can survive outside the body for at least a week so surfaces contaminated with dried blood pose infection risk. 
Injecting drugs and sharing needles puts people at high risk of becoming infected, however, travel also puts people at risk if they are not vaccinated.
More than 12% of cases in the UK are thought to result from people travelling to and working in countries where there is increased risk of hepatitis b infection. 
Travellers most at risk are those who suffer accidents that result in requiring medical treatments abroad where unsterile or re used equipment may be used. About 8% of travellers are sick enough to require medical treatment in developing countries. 
Should I get a Hepatitis B Vaccine before travel?
The UK National Vaccination Programme does not vaccinate against Hepatitis B routinely, therefore, Hepatitis B vaccination should be considered for those travelling to developing countries .Those travellers at particular risk are those who are volunteering e.g. aid workers and those assisting with construction e.g. helping building schools. Travellers participating in school projects abroad will mix with potentially infected children in schools and may be accidently exposed to the virus e.g. through contact sports injuries or maybe volunteering in orphanages with sick children .Other travellers that are at risk are those whose work people work abroad puts them at risk e.g. body guards/police/ and travellers who adopt risky behaviours such as unprotected sex.
Travellers with any chronic diseases are potentially going to need medical attention whilst travelling so should consider vaccination.
Hepatitis b vaccination is a course of 3 injections >There are two schedules that may be offered according to time left to the traveller before departure.
Schedule 1: Day 0 1st vaccine Day 7 2nd vaccine Day 21 3rd vaccine
(This schedule requires a 4th vaccine 1 year later)
Day 0 1st vaccine 4 weeks later 2nd vaccine 5 months later 3rd vaccine
(This schedule requires a 4th vaccine 5 years later)
Cost – £40 per dose.
To book a Hepatitis B vaccine please call 01273 749100 or book ONLINE
Hepatitis B vaccine does not protect you against other blood borne infections such as HIV and Hepatitis C. There are no vaccines available to prevent these infections. We recommend that you carry your own sterile needle kit for use in a medical emergency. These can be purchased in clinic or in our shop.