Egypt Tours, Red Sea & Travel

   

Medical Frequently Asked Questions

This page should answer many questions for you regarding health matters while traveling in Egypt. We advise you to c heck with your own country's health guidelines for travelers to Egypt. For general health information a good source for you to check with is: World Health Organization's Travel & Health Information for Egypt .
 
To avoid most common health problems It is recommended that you drink bottled water and lots of it! The main reason for this is that tap water in Egypt is heavily chlorinated and this can easily cause stomach problems. In some of the rural areas water may come from tanks or underground wells and should always be avoided. Bottled water is available everywhere but be sure the seal on the bottle is unbroken before you buy it. A 2-liter bottle of natural water should cost no more than 2 Egyptian pounds except in some hotels and restaurants where it will be much more expensive. Ice cubes and fruit drinks (such as lemon juice) are often made with tap water and should also be avoided if you're concerned about getting stomach problems.

Hopefully you'll not experience any medical problems but many travelers do experience a common stomach upset known as 'gyppy tummy' or 'pharaoh's revenge' a common form of diarrhea sometimes accompanied by sickness and if not properly treated can last for several days. This is the most common complaint from travelers and is often brought on by overindulgence of rich food and dehydration. Egyptian food can be very tasty but try to go easy at first and you should have little or no problems.

Try our FAQ search!

 

Table of Contents

  1. Do I need any immunizations to travel to Egypt?

  2. What medical facilities are available in Egypt?

  3. If I need medical care can I use my medical insurance from home?

  4. Do I need a health certificate from my doctor for diving courses?

  5. Where is the nearest hyper baric chamber?

  6. How much will it cost if I need to use the hyper baric chamber?

  7. Should I bring any medicine or a first aid kit with me?

  8. Is there anything I should be aware of regarding health matters?

  9. Do you have a contact list for local hospitals & doctors?


Do I need any immunizations to travel to Egypt?

No special immunizations or vaccinations are not required to travel in Egypt however we advise you to check with your own doctor for inoculation requirements. Even though no specific vaccinations are required to travel in Egypt, it is recommended to consult with your physician at least 2 months before departure, and to have your Tetanus, Diphtheria, Polio, Typhoid and Hepatitis A and B immunizations up to date.

Back to Top

What medical facilities are available in Egypt?

There are several hospitals in Egypt that provide various levels of services from minor outpatient care to more serious problems including surgical procedures. Generally medical facilities are adequate for most minor medical problems, including diving related emergencies. You can find an updated list of medical facilities including contact information and other important numbers near the bottom of this page. Additionally, many of the larger Hotels in the Red Sea have a doctor on call, and the bigger cities have private hospitals, of which some offer very reliable medical care, are clean and equipped with latest technology. In case of medical emergencies there are modern well-equipped hospitals in all major cities in Egypt, predominantly in Cairo. You may however be referred to a private hospital for treatment in some cases.

 

Pharmacies are numerous in every in Egypt and easy to  recognize; as "Pharmacy" will usually be written in English. If you have any health queries most pharmacists are very helpful and will recommend proper treatment or remedies if needed. Nearly any type of medicine is available in Egypt without prescription and non-prescription treatments are generally very inexpensive.

Back to Top

If I need medical care can I use my medical insurance from home?

Medical treatment in Egypt can be very expensive so it is important that you have adequate coverage on your medical insurance. Although there are no customs restrictions, if you're taking prescription medication while abroad it is advisable to have a note from your doctor with you just in case you're questioned.

 

Medical coverage policies are different with each insurance company. Really, only you know if your insurance will cover medical care while traveling and it is your responsibility to check with your insurance company at home before traveling. If it does not provide adequate coverage for your needs we suggest you buy sufficient coverage before leaving home.

Back to Top

Do I need a health certificate from my doctor for diving courses?

A health certificate from a doctor isn't required to participate in a diving course however, you must be in good health.  If you have any pre-existing medical condition it will be necessary for you to have a statement from a diving doctor that states you have no known medical condition that is incompatible with scuba diving activities. If you have any doubts about any medical issues contact us and we'll provide you with a copy of the PADI Medical Statement form that outlines medical requirements for safe diving.

Back to Top

Where is the nearest hyper baric chamber?

Currently there are several full service hyper baric chambers located in at every major diving area; Sharm El Sheikh, Dahab, Hurghada, El Gouna and Marsa Alam.  All these facilities are fully staffed with professional medical teams and prepared to manage diving related accidents.

 

Back to Top

 


How much will it cost if I need to use the hyper baric chamber?

The cost to use a hyper baric chamber can be very expensive depending on the seriousness of your condition, how much treatment you need and how many hours you need to stay in the chamber. The hyper baric chambers in the Red Sea do offer special coverage to use their facilities at a very low cost less than 5 Euros per person. The coverage allows you to be treated in any facility for an unlimited amount of time and we strongly advise you get this coverage if you plan to dive in the Red Sea, especially for liveaboard trips. It is well worth the extra peace of mind. For additional information and details contact us.

 

Back to Top

 


Should I bring any medical supplies or a first aid kit with me?

Any time you travel it is recommended you take a few first aid supplies with you for minor problems. When traveling to Egypt you may also want to bring a diarrhea remedy such as Imodium in your first-aid kit but in most cases the Egyptian remedies work much better and are much less expensive.

 

The major reason for sicknesses is travelers who are not used to the heat simply do not drink enough water / fluids to replace what they lost. It is suggested that you drink around 6 liters of water per day as a good preventative. Alcohol  and drinks with caffeine are also dehydrating and not suitable as a replacement for water. The general rule of thumb is that if you do not urinate frequently or it is very yellow then you're not drinking enough water.

 

Should you require special medication, make sure to take sufficient supply with you, as it might not be available locally. A basic medic first aid kid is also a good idea. It should contain painkiller / antipyretic / anti-inflammatory (IB Profen) tabs, antihistamine tabs & cream, decongestant, multi-vitamins/iron, wide spectrum antibiotic, seasickness tabs, intestinal antiseptic, diarrhea tabs, re-hydration salts, antiseptic solution, antibiotic spray & cream, antifungal cream/powder, eye/ear drops, sunscreen, insect repellent, sting relief cream/spray, bandages, plasters, adhesive & sterile dressings, non-sticking antibiotic dressings, gauze, sterile-strips, cotton wool, syringes & needles. Pharmacies are very well supplied and any medication can be obtained without prescription.

Back to Top

Is there anything I should be aware of regarding health matters?

Something many travelers do not think much about are mosquitoes. They can also be a problem in Egypt especially in the summer and fall months. Upper Egypt is the home of some very large and hungry bugs; if you're prone to insect bites you should use a good insect repellent on all exposed areas of skin, especially in the evenings. Insect repellent is readily available in Egyptian pharmacies but it may not work well for you so you may want to take your own from home.

 

Since the building of the High Dam at Aswan, Egypt is considered to be a Malaria-free region, but check with your doctor at home for regarding any precautionary measures. Malaria tablets can have adverse effects on some people.

 

Lastly, the Nile river inhibits a special snail which carries a parasite called Bilharzias or Shistostoma and they are commonly found in shallow water near the banks or in the canals. These creatures can cause serious illness if transmitted to humans so avoid bathing in or drinking from the river.

 

Back to Top

 


Do you have a contact list for local hospitals & doctors?

Yes, below is a contact list of hospitals, doctors and decompression chamber services for the Red Sea.

 

El Gouna Medical Facilities

El Gouna Hospital & Deco Chamber 065 580012-17
Emergencies 065 580011
Dr. Aziz 012 3149630
Dr. Hossam & Hanna Nasef 012 2187550
 
Hurghada Medical Facilities
Public Hospital 065 3546740
Navy Hospital & Deco Chamber 065 3544195
Dr. Amgad 010 1498846
El Salam Hospital 065 3548785/6/7
Dr. Osama Eshmany 012 3109743
Ambulance 065 3546490
 
Marsa Alam Medical Facilities
Deco Chamber (phone 1) +20 122433116
Deco Chamber (phone 2) +20 22636759
Dr. Hossam & Hanna Nasef 012 2187550
 
El Quseir Medical Facilities
Public Hospital 065 430070/04
Dr. Saber (Movenpick) 065 432100
Dr. Saber 065 430574
 

Sharm El Sheikh Medical Facilities

Sharm Hospital 3661894
Ambulance 3600554
Search & Rescue 0123134158
Hyperbaric Doctor M.D. 3661011
Mount Sinai Clinic 3601610
Fire Brigade 3600633
Back to Top