Senz visits the International Health Center of the City Council, one of the centers in Spain providing information and vaccinations to the most travelers

Inma Sanz during her visit to the International Health Center of the Madrid City Council

Inma Sanz, deputy mayor of the capital, representative for security and emergencies and municipal spokesperson, visited this morning the International Health Center of the Madrid City Council, which belongs to the Madrid Municipal Institute of Health and is located on Calle Montesa, 22, district of Salamanca, among others In addition to the operation, health advice is provided for citizens intending to travel internationally, necessary vaccinations are provided, and comprehensive care is provided for those who have experienced animal attacks.

This civic center is one of the busiest in Spain, mainly in the months leading up to the summer holidays. As of July 31 this year, it has assisted more than 5,400 people in face-to-face consultations and answered nearly 4,500 consultations electronically. In 2022, the center administered 11,700 vaccines, recommended more than 11,900 immunogens, and implemented about 4,650 malaria preventive treatments.

During his visit, Sanz highlighted the individualized consultative work carried out by the center’s 12 professionals around “advice on water and food hygiene, as well as preventive measures against insect bites in destinations,” and highlighted the recognition of the center as well as “This municipal resource is highly appreciated by the people of Madrid”, “it is a cutting-edge reference center that does not exist in other local governments” and received “more than 97% positive ratings out of 8 points”.

The representative recalled the importance of going to such centers when traveling abroad, as the professionals in these centers understand the behavior and evolution of epidemics of mosquito-borne diseases such as dengue, chikungunya or Zika, the possible impact of the rainy season, etc. question. There is for them.

To this end, he emphasizes that “if you understand the mechanisms of transmission of different diseases in your destination, then the risk of getting sick in other countries is reduced”, thus stressing the “importance of organizing such events”. Travel with time.

The vast majority of people receiving treatment at the International Health Center are of Spanish nationality (about 90%), mainly for the purpose of tourism (70%), 10% for cooperation purposes, and the rest for work, study or visiting relatives. In addition, those between the ages of 21 to 30 and 31 to 41 are the most frequent travelers, with most trips lasting between 8 and 15 days.

Advice, international vaccinations and assistance when bitten by an animal

One of the most important services provided by the Town Hall International Health Center includes travel health advice and international vaccinations, comprehensive care for those planning short-term trips to health-risk areas. These services require an appointment.

Human rabies immunization counseling is another pillar of the centre. It provides comprehensive care for people who have been attacked by animals and assesses the need for anti-rabies and immunoglobulin vaccines if necessary. The most common bites treated at the center were canines (60%), followed by distant cats and monkeys. Attacks by bats are rare, but important to consider as they always require a rabies vaccine. Half of the attacks by terrestrial mammals treated at the center occurred abroad.

The Center collaborates with the Madrid community on the Corona vaccinations, flu vaccinations and other vaccines on the calendar, as well as the issuance of vaccination certificates.

The most frequently recommended vaccines were those against hepatitis A (60%), typhoid (59%) (both gastrointestinally transmitted) and yellow fever (42%) (mosquito-borne). Likewise, 51% of trips required antimalarials to prevent malaria transmitted through mosquito bites.

Destination trend changes

According to inquiries received, two years after the pandemic, there has been a trend change in the destinations people choose, with international tourism up 86% year-on-year in the first quarter of 2023. According to the World Tourism Organization, this year has recovered to be close to 2019 s level.

If before 2020 Southeast Asian countries such as India, Thailand or Indonesia were the preferred destinations, by 2022 the trend has reversed, with Tanzania being the main destination, followed by Peru, Colombia and Kenya. This year, Kenya and Tanzania continued to be the most popular places, Southeast Asia started to recover, and among South America, the most visited was Colombia. /

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