In areas of the world where poor environmental sanitation exists, bacteria can contaminate food and water. This includes Salmonella typhi the cause of typhoid fever.
Food handlers are often responsible for the spread of typhoid, particularly when hands are not washed after using the lavatory. There is a higher risk of contracting typhoid fever when consuming buffet food.
Typhoid fever causes fever, headache, cough, rash and occasionally diarrhoea. It is endemic in the developing world and can cause serious illness, even death, if not treated.
Safe eating and drinking practices are essential in minimising your risk of contracting typhoid fever.
Vaccination against typhoid is strongly recommended for travellers over two years old travelling to areas of high risk. Backpackers are at an increased risk of contracting the disease.
An oral vaccine may provide five years or more of protection in those individuals who can swallow capsules. There are three options for typhoid vaccination which your doctor will discuss with you based on your individual requirements.