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Cook Islands Travel Health

Cook Islands flag

Cook Islands Health

Population: 21,200 (July 2004 est.)
Capital: Avarua

The following report outlines the key health issues and concerns that travelers to Cook Islands should be aware of before vacation or general business travel, based on the reporting from the CDC Yellowbook.

Yellow Fever Vaccination Requirements :
Not required
Malaria Area of Risk :
Malaria Chloroquine Resistance :
Not applicable
CDC Yellow Book Region Overview :
Region Introduction
Australia (including Ashmore, Cartier, Cocos [Keeling], and the Coral Islands), Baker Island, Christmas Island, Cook Islands, Federated States of Micronesia, Fiji, French Polynesia (Tahiti), Guam, Hawaii (US), Kiribati, Marshall Islands, Midway Islands, Nauru, New Caledonia, New Zealand, Niue, Norfolk Island, Northern Mariana Islands, Pacific Trust (including Johnston Atoll, Wake Island, and Midway Island), Palau, Papua New Guinea, Pitcairn (Pitcairn, Henderson, Ducie, and Oeno Islands), Samoa, American Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tokelau, Tonga, Tuvalu, and Vanuatu. In Australia, the mainland has tropical monsoon forests in the north and east; dry tropical forests, savannah, and deserts in the center; and Mediterranean scrub and subtropical forests in the south. New Zealand has a temperate climate with the North Island characterized by subtropical forests and the South Island by steppe vegetation and hardwood forests. On other islands, the area covers an enormous expanse of ocean, with the larger, mountainous, tropical and monsoon rain forest-covered islands of the west giving way to the smaller, originally volcanic peaks and coral islands of the east.

International travelers to Australia and New Zealand will, in general, not be subjected to the hazards of communicable diseases to an extent greater than that found in their own countries.

Anthropod Borne Diseases
Arthropod-borne diseases (mosquito-borne epidemic polyarthritis and viral encephalitis including Ross River virus and Murray Valley Encephalitis virus) can occur in some rural areas of Australia. Occasional outbreaks of dengue have occurred in northern Australia in recent years. In 1998 cases of Japanese encephalitis occurred in Torres Strait, Australia for the first time. Arthropod-borne diseases occur in most of the other islands. Malaria is endemic in Papua New Guinea, Solomon Islands, and Vanuatu; filariasis is widespread, but its prevalence varies; mite-borne typhus has been reported from Papua New Guinea; and dengue fever, including its hemorrhagic form, can occur in epidemics in most islands.

Foodborne and Waterborne Diseases
Foodborne and waterborne diseases such as the diarrheal diseases, typhoid fever, helminthic, and hepatitis A infections are commonly reported on many of the islands except Australia and New Zealand. Biointoxication can occur from raw or cooled fish and shellfish.

Other Diseases
With the exception of Australia and New Zealand, hepatitis B is endemic and trachoma has been reported. Poliomyelitis cases have not been reported from any of these areas for more than 5 years.

Other Hazards
Coelenterates (corals and jellyfish) might prove a hazard to sea-bathers in all areas. Poisonous fish and sea snakes are a hazard to bathers on many islands with the exception of Australia and New Zealand. Heat is a hazard in the northern and central parts of Australia. Insectivorous and fruit-eating bats in Australia have been found to harbor a virus related to rabies virus and, therefore, should be avoided. Snakes and poisonous spiders are a hazard in most parts of Australia and large crocodiles inhabit almost all rivers and estuaries in the tropical north. Walking or swimming in bodies of water in this area should be avoided at all times.

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The NCBuy Travel Center Country Health reporting data is for general information purposes only, and should not be viewed as an official source of health advice.

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