Image Source: www.acu.edu.au
Health and Safety in AustraliaNov 07, 2016
Australia is generally a safe destination with travelers enjoying unhindered travel experiences in terms of their personal safety and security. The stable political system, well-maintained roads, low crime rate and high standard of health make it a safe and easy country to explore.
With common-sense, you can safely enjoy Australia’s unique landscapes – from the vast outback to wild ocean beaches and pristine wilderness. However, as with all travel at home or away, you should observe the same precautions with your personal safety and possessions.
Here you will find practical information out about the health facilities and services available and website links for more detailed information.
Travel Insurance & Medical Services
A travel insurance policy that covers you for theft, loss, accidents and medical problems before you leave home is highly recommended. If you plan on doing any adventure activities like scuba diving, bushwalking or travelling in remote areas, check that your policy fully covers these activities. Remember to bring your insurance policy details and emergency contact numbers and with you.
Australia’s public health care system is called Medicare and Australian hospitals provide world-class medical facilities and standards of care. The Australian Government has reciprocal healthcare agreements with some countries for medically necessary treatment while visiting Australia, however it is best to check your eligibility before you leave home and have appropriate travel insurance to cover your stay in Australia.
Vaccinations & Medications
No special immunizations or vaccinations are required to visit Australia unless you have come from, or have visited a yellow fever infected country within six days of your arrival. However, regulations and medical advice can change at short notice, so check with your doctor and the relevant Australian Government websites before you leave home.
Medicine brought into Australia for personal use is subject to controls and must be declared on your arrival. It is recommended you bring a prescription or letter from your doctor outlining your medical condition and the medicine you are carrying. If you need to obtain prescription medicine while you are here, the prescription must be written by a doctor in Australia.
Much time and effort has been spent in recent years to ensure that travelling with a disability won’t stop you enjoying all that Australia has to offer. If you have a medical condition or special needs, you will find plenty of services available. Speak to your travel agent about your specific requirements or visit the websites below to help you prepare before you leave home.
The Australian sun is very strong and can burn your skin in as little as 15 minutes in summer, so it is important to protect yourself all year round, even if it is a cloudy day.
The Australian Government has invested a lot of time and effort over the past few decades educating Australians about protecting themselves from too much exposure to ultraviolet (UV) radiation from the sun, the major cause of skin cancer; the most commonly diagnosed cancer in Australia.
All Australian children now wear sunscreen and wide-brimmed hats to school; and many bathing costumes are now made using sun protective materials.
While travelling in Australia, be sun smart and protect yourself against sun damage by wearing clothes that cover as much of your skin as possible, even when swimming; applying a high-level water resistant sunscreen regularly; wearing a hat and sunglasses that provide good protection for the face, nose, neck, ears and eyes; and sitting in the shade rather than directly in the sun.
Extra care should be taken in the middle of the day when UV radiation is most intense, and make sure you drink plenty of fluids to avoid dehydration.
The Australian Government’s SunSmart UV Alert will tell you the time period when you need to be most careful and appears on the weather page of most daily newspapers and on the Bureau of Meteorology website.
Cancer Council Australia has developed a range of high quality, affordable sun protection products including sunglasses, UV protective clothing, sunscreens, hats, sun shelters, swim goggles, marquees, umbrellas and cosmetics, which are available online and from state and territory Cancer Council shops, department stores, pharmacies and other retail outlets around the country.