Vaccination and Health Risks

Your doctor can give you important advice and prescribe vaccines and medications to help you stay safe while traveling abroad. The following are vaccinations and medications you and your physician may wish to consider before travel to Afghanistan.

  • To have the most benefit, see a doctor at least 4-6 weeks before your trip to allow time for your vaccines to take effect. If you are leaving sooner, it is still important to see a doctor as soon as possible for vaccines, medications and information about how to protect yourself from illness and injury while traveling.
  • Your doctor will make specific recommendations, depending on your health and immunization history, areas of the country you will be visiting, planned activities and other factors. If your travel plans will take you to more than one country during a single trip, be sure to let your health-care provider know. Long-term travelers, such as those who plan to work or study abroad, may also need additional vaccinations as required by their employer or school.
  • If you have a chronic medical condition, share your travel plans with any doctors who are currently treating you.

Vaccine or Disease


Vaccination or Treatment Recommendations

Routine Recommended if you are not up-to-date with routine shots such as, measles/mumps/rubella (MMR) vaccine, diphtheria/pertussis/tetanus (DPT) vaccine, poliovirus vaccine, etc.
Hepatitis A Recommended because you can get hepatitis A through contaminated food or water in Afghanistan, regardless of where you are eating or staying.
Hepatitis B Recommended, especially if you might have sex with a new partner, get a tattoo or piercing, or have any medical procedures. You can get hepatitis B through sexual contact, contaminated needles, and blood products.
Japanese Encephalitis Not endemic
Malaria Talk to your doctor about how to prevent malaria while traveling. You may need to take prescription medicine before, during, and after your trip to prevent malaria, especially if you are visiting low-altitude areas. See more detailed information about malaria in Afghanistan.
Meningococcal Meningitis Not endemic
Polio Recommended; You may need a polio vaccine before your trip to Afghanistan. If you were vaccinated against polio as a child but have never had an additional dose as an adult, you should get this booster dose. Adults need only one polio booster dose in their lives (unless you are fulfilling the country requirement listed below). If you were not completely vaccinated as a child or do not know your vaccination status, talk to your doctor about getting vaccinated. If you will be in Afghanistan for more than 4 weeks, the government of Afghanistan may require you to show proof of polio vaccination when you are exiting the country. To meet this requirement, you should receive a polio vaccine between 4 weeks and 12 months before the date you are leaving Afghanistan. Talk to your doctor about whether this requirement applies to you.
Rabies Rabies can be found in dogs, bats, and other mammals in Afghanistan. This Vaccine is recommended for travelers involved in outdoor and other activities (such as camping, hiking, biking, adventure travel, and caving) that put them at risk for animal bites, for people who will be working with or around animals (such as veterinarians, wildlife professionals, and researchers), for people who are taking long trips or moving to Afghanistan, and for children, because they tend to play with animals, might not report bites, and are more likely to have animal bites on their head and neck.
Typhoid Recommended for most travelers, especially if you are staying with friends or relatives, visiting smaller cities or rural areas, or if you are an adventurous eater.
Yellow Fever Proof of yellow fever vaccination required if traveler is arriving from a country with risk of yellow fever transmission.

Resource Links

This document is not a complete medical guide for travelers to this region. Conditions change over time and the recommendations for various countries at the time you travel may differ from the recommendations listed here. Consult with your doctor or visit the CDC website for specific information related to your needs and your medical history; recommendations may differ for pregnant women, young children, and persons who have chronic medical conditions.

Be sure to read the information about all the regions you are planning to visit.