Alert, response, and capacity building under the International Health Regulations (IHR)

International travel and health, and mass gatherings

Global travel exposes many people to a range of health. Many of these risks, however, can be minimized by precautions taken before, during and after travel. This site is a guide for medical and public health professionals who advise travellers. The site explains how travellers can stay healthy and provides WHO guidance on vaccinations, malaria chemoprophylaxis and treatment, personal protection against insects and other disease vectors, and safety in different environmental settings. It covers all the principal risks to travellers’ health, both during their journeys and at their destinations.

The influx of large numbers of people attracted to a mass gathering, together with the infrastructural changes needed to support the event, can place severe strains on such services, compromising the ability to detect a developing problem and carry out an effective response. If the gathering draws visitors from different nations, regions and cultures, the risk of potential importation or international spread of infectious disease presents additional challenges. WHO provides guidance to the needs of event organizers and local and national authorities.