Atlanta-based Morehouse School of Medicine (MSM) is working to ensure that those traveling to Rio de Janeiro for the Olympic Games will be prepared on the health care front. The school’s Morehouse Healthcare is offering services including vaccinations, prescriptions and healthy travel tips.
The clinic, led by Dr. Jalal Zuberi and his team, have been dispensing vaccinations, prescriptions and general advice for staying healthy overseas since 1998. “We offer consultations on medical health issues that a person may face while visiting different countries,” says Dr. Zuberi, an expert in healthy travel. “Especially if it’s the first time going somewhere, people need to know what is out there and what kind of communicable diseases they might be exposed to.”
The clinic follows the latest Centers for Disease Control (CDC) recommendations for vaccinations and infectious disease prevention. It also updates travelers with U.S. Department of State advisories for travel to politically unstable areas.
Press reports have outlined concerns about health issues as the games come to Rio. They include the Zika virus, travelers diarrhea, malaria, dengue and yellow fever. And travelers are warned not to drink unbottled water.
Clinic doctors, who are board-certified practitioners who hold Certificates of Travel Health, can give patients country-specific information and can discuss their travel itinerary. They are also members of the International Society of Travel Medicine.
The idea for Morehouse Healthcare’s travel clinic came after the city of Atlanta was awarded the 1996 Olympic Games. Zuberi said he anticipated that the exposure of the games would put the city on a global stage and ultimately cause the population to want to visit other countries where the Olympic games are held.