Brazil is an exciting destination, however there is a risk of infectious diseases. Prepare your trip and check if you need any vaccinations for Brazil to ensure a pleasant holiday.
This article includes helpful travel health advice and a list of officially recommended vaccinations for Brazil.
While not everyone will need these listed vaccines, your medical history and itinerary may help you determine if you are vulnerable or at risk. For a personalised assessment, book a free telephone consultation with one of our prescribing nurses, who will create a vaccine plan based on your needs.
There are a variety of illnesses in Brazil for which there are no injections, so travel health advice on how to avoid contracting them may come in handy.
The risk of contracting malaria is highest in the Amazon regions as well as Amapa and Manaus, and along the trans-Amazon highway, from Santarém to Cuiabá.
Travellers on cruises or travelling throughout the Amazon Basin, or visiting areas with jungles, mines, and agriculture, are strongly advised to consider antimalarial tablets.
The risk of malaria is low in Iguazu Falls, Belem, and the coast from Fortaleza to Rio de Janeiro and São Paulo. However, the risk is higher in surrounding forested areas.
There is currently an outbreak of zika in Brazil, mostly present in the southeastern part of the country. There is no vaccine to prevent the zika virus, so travellers visiting that region should take strict anti-mosquito measures during the day.
Pregnant women are advised to postpone travel to Brazil until after the pregnancy to avoid the risk of harming the baby.
There are ongoing cases of dengue throughout Brazil, notably in São Paolo and Parana.
Mosquitoes carrying the virus are most present in towns, cities and surrounding areas that lack sanitation or are near stagnant water.
The transmission happens during the day and is especially high during the rainy season, from January to May, in Brazil.
It is important to take precautions during your stay in Brazil, as the diseases can be spread in many different ways and the risk can increase at anytime.
There is a risk of malaria, dengue fever and zika in Brazil, and you cannot be protected against the diseases by vaccination.
Because of this, it is really important you protect yourself against the main cause of these infections, which is a mosquito bite, during your stay in the country.
All travellers going to Brazil should take care with food and water hygiene, as there is a risk of typhoid and hepatitis A, which are both transmitted through contaminated food and water.
If you are visiting friends or relatives in Brazil or are a long-stay traveller, you are at increased risk of consuming contaminated food and drinks, and you should therefore be extra careful.
Below are some of the most useful services that you may need while in Brazil:
British Embassy Brasilia The British Embassy in Brasilia can assist you, if you are in need for urgent help. You can call them on +55 (61)3329 2300.
Local emergency medical services In a medical emergency, call 192 or 193.
The local general emergency number is 190, which, although it is the Military Police, can be used for requesting an ambulance.
For an English-speaking contact line for all emergencies that you may encounter during your stay, the Tourist Police +55 (11)3214 0209 in São Paolo and +55 (21)3399 7170 in Rio de Janeiro is available 24 hours.
Medical facilities and practitioners To choose a medical facility if you get ill while you are in Brazil, the British Consular Network in Brazil has prepared a list of reputable medical facilities and practitioners in Brazil, each accompanied by a simplified overview of services and useful information.
Check if you need vaccinations Speak with our prescribing nurses at least six to eight weeks before travel for advice on vaccinations for Brazil
Mosquito protection Ensure you have everything you need to minimise your chance of mosquito bites while in Brazil, including DEET insect repellent
Yellow fever certificate Recent cases have been confirmed in São Paulo and Parana state. Double-check if the yellow fever certificate is required upon entry in Brazil
Travel insurance If you become ill in Brazil and did not receive the right vaccinations before you left, your travel insurance can become void. So, make sure to check before you leave
Travelling with medication Check with the embassy of Brazil if there are any restrictions on medications before you travel
Note useful contact numbers Make a list of contacts to take with you to Brazil, as these can be helpful in case of an emergency
Anne Marie Major, Independent Nurse Prescriber
June 20, 2019
Do you often get diarrhoea while travelling? You may have had contaminated food or water, which can also cause food- and waterborne diseases.
Zika can’t be prevented with a vaccine, so it’s important that you practice Zika virus prevention while abroad. Don't know how? Let us help you!