Although preventive strategies do reduce the risk of illness, sometimes things just happen and you need to find a doctor. Everyone has a tale to tell, but the reality is that good quality medical help is readily available for most travellers.
- If you are staying with family or friends, they can take you to their own local practitioner. Most public and major city hospitals maintain a high quality 24 hour medical service for travellers and are therefore quite experienced at meeting all medical needs.
- Your hotel or hostel can usually put you in touch with a competent medical practitioner.
- Dedicated travel clinics in general supply excellent post-travel health care and consulates or embassies are also a good initial contact, especially for more serious problems.
- An increasing number of travel health insurance companies are now supplying an international 24 hour emergency telephone number as a first point of contact. The traveller calls this number and depending on the nature of the problem, are either referred to the nearest medical service or arrangements made to transport them home.