Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Counting Down To South Africa T minus 6

Yesterday was right up there in the stress department. We spent most of the day trying to get an answer (or at least the same answer from any two sources) on how to interpret the you do not need yellow fever immunizations for South Africa unless your travels include destinations in the yellow fever belt tidbit in the travel information. Until yesterday, we were under the impression we were in the clear. We've had several friends travel to South Africa and none had to be jabbed. However, there was concern that since we refuel in a potential yellow fever country, we might have to have the shots anyway.

Further research merely added to the confusion. One place said you HAVE to have the shots. But they need 10 days to take effect, and we're leaving before then. Another said they give the shots, but have no appointments until we leave. Our county health doesn't give them anymore. And on and on, and of course, by now it's 5 PM and nobody's in the offices.

I sent an email to the conference coordinator in South Africa. He investigated with the South African medical folks, and responded this morning:

According to Medi Travel, a consultancy here, you do NOT need a yellow
fever jab if you stay on the plane. If you disembark, you are then
potentially at risk because there are day-time biting mosquitoes in the
area, and so would require a jab. (You will probably find that the
flight attendants spray the cabin with insecticide shortly before
departure to ensure that any stowaways are zapped - marginally less
unpleasant than the jab!).
So, I'm feeling better now, although I suppose I should still call the local clinics I unearthed from an Internet search yesterday and see if there's any chance I can get the shot this week. If nothing else, having that certificate will guarantee nobody will ask. It will be my good deed for all the others on the plane who didn't get one.

Meanwhile, I have to work on all the 'Ancillary Materials' the publisher wants for When Danger Calls -- those pesky cover blurbs, jacket copy, author quote sources, bio ... and probably more, but I haven't opened that file yet.

1 comment:

barbara huffert said...

Oh Terry, what a waste of your valuable time! I don't understand why there isn't a definitive list for this sort of thing somewhere. I guess that would be too logical and make it much too easy on travellers. Can't have that, can we?