The Travel Health and Vaccine Specialists

Health Alert


Tropical Cyclone Pam in Vanuatu

Updated May 27, 2015

Tropical Cyclone Pam hit Vanuatu on March 14, 2015. Vanuatu is an island nation in the South Pacific consisting of about 80 small islands. Record wind speeds of 185 miles (300 kilometers) per hour caused considerable devastation throughout the country. Although the airport is functioning normally, many of Vanuatu’s provinces are flooded and inaccessible. Significant infrastructure damage has caused problems with sanitation, food supply, electricity, transportation, shelter, communications, security, and medical care. For the latest information, see ReliefWeb’s report.

CDC recommends that travelers to Vanuatu( take precautions to protect their health. For detailed information on safety and security, see the US Department of State’s security message for US citizens.

What can travelers do to protect themselves?

Before your trip:

During your trip:

  • Avoid mold contamination:
    • If cleaning out a building destroyed by flooding, wear personal protective equipment (PPE), such as gloves, goggles, and a tight-fitting approved N-95 respirator. Travelers should take sufficient PPE with them, as these may be scarce in Vanuatu.
    • Keep hands, skin, and clothing clean and free from mold-contaminated dust.
  • If you feel sick during your trip:
    • Talk to a doctor or nurse if you feel seriously ill, especially if you have a fever.
    • For more information about medical care abroad, see Getting Health Care Abroad.
    • Avoid contact with other people while you are sick.

After your trip:

  • If you are not feeling well after your trip, you may need to see a doctor. If you need help finding a travel medicine specialist, see Find a Clinic( Be sure to tell your doctor about your travel, including where you went and what you did on your trip. Also tell your doctor if you were bitten or scratched by an animal while traveling.
  • If your doctor prescribed antimalarial medicine for your trip, keep taking the rest of your pills after you return home. If you stop taking your medicine too soon, you could still get sick.
  • Malaria is always a serious disease and may be deadly. If you become ill with a fever either while traveling in a malaria-risk area or after you return home (for up to 1 year), you should seek immediate medical attention and should tell the doctor about your travel history.
  • For more information, see Getting Sick after Travel(

Clinician Information:

Additional Information: