Philippines Health Care and Vaccinations
Health insurance is essential, particularly since approximately three-quarters of the hospitals are private. Call 117 for emergency services, although if you’re in Manila then it may be quicker to contact an ambulance service directly. These include Makati Medical (tel: +63 2 888 8999) and St. Luke's Hospital (tel: +63 2 789 7700).
Food and Drink
Water used for drinking, brushing teeth or making ice should have first been boiled or otherwise sterilised. Milk that's unpasteurised should be boiled. Avoid dairy products that are likely to have been made from unboiled milk. Only eat well-cooked meat and fish. Vegetables should be cooked and fruit peeled.
Zika virus is a risk in Malaysia. Because Zika infection in a pregnant woman can cause serious birth defects, women who are pregnant should not travel to Malaysia. All travellers should strictly follow steps to prevent mosquito bites and sexual exposure to Zika virus during and after the trip.
Avoid swimming and paddling in stagnant water and rivers; swimming pools that are well chlorinated and maintained are safe. Dengue fever is an ongoing public health concern, and is spread by mosquitoes particularly around stagnant water in urban areas – unlike malaria there is no effective medication to prevent it, so it is best to take steps to avoid being bitten. Vaccinations against tuberculosis and hepatitis B are sometimes recommended.