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Costa Rica – Health Risks, Inoculations, Vaccinations, and Health Certificates

In this article, we will discuss some of the health risks in Costa Rica, whether inoculations, vaccinations, or health certificates are required for entry, and where you can get reliable advice on health risks in Costa Rica.

Health Risks in Costa Rica

Mosquito-Borne Diseases

Costa Rica has a tropical climate, which makes it a prime location for mosquitoes that carry diseases like dengue fever, chikungunya, and Zika virus. Travelers should take measures to prevent mosquito bites, such as wearing long-sleeved shirts and pants, using insect repellent, and sleeping under mosquito nets.

Food and Waterborne Diseases

Travelers to Costa Rica are at risk of contracting food and waterborne illnesses, such as traveler’s diarrhea and hepatitis A. Travelers should be cautious when consuming food and drinks, and should only consume bottled or purified water. They should also avoid street food and any food that has been left unrefrigerated for extended periods.

Sun Exposure


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Costa Rica is a tropical country and has high levels of UV radiation. Travelers should take precautions to protect themselves from the sun, such as wearing sunscreen with a high SPF, a hat, and sunglasses.

Altitude Sickness

Travelers to Costa Rica who plan to visit high-altitude regions, such as the Monteverde Cloud Forest, may experience altitude sickness. Symptoms can include headaches, nausea, and difficulty breathing. To prevent altitude sickness, travelers should allow their bodies time to adjust to the altitude and avoid heavy exercise and alcohol during the first few days of their trip.

Inoculations, Vaccinations and Health Certificates

Inoculations and Vaccinations

Currently, there are no specific inoculations or vaccinations required for travelers entering Costa Rica. However, travelers should ensure that their routine vaccinations are up to date, including measles, mumps, rubella, diphtheria, tetanus, and pertussis. Travelers who plan to participate in outdoor activities or who are staying for an extended period may consider getting vaccinated against hepatitis A and B, typhoid fever, and rabies.

Health Certificates

Travelers arriving from countries with a risk of yellow fever transmission are required to provide a yellow fever vaccination certificate upon entry into Costa Rica. Travelers should check with the Costa Rican embassy or consulate in their country of origin to determine if they need a health certificate.

Where to Get Reliable Advice on Health Risks in Costa Rica

Costa Rican Ministry of Health

The Costa Rican Ministry of Health provides information on health risks in Costa Rica, including updates on diseases and outbreaks. They also provide advice on vaccinations and immunizations for travelers. Travelers can visit the Costa Rican Ministry of Health website at:

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) provides information on health risks in Costa Rica, including updates on diseases and outbreaks. They also provide advice on vaccinations and immunizations for travelers. Travelers can visit the CDC website at:

Costa Rican Embassy or Consulate

Travelers can also contact their local Costa Rican embassy or consulate for information on health risks in Costa Rica and entry requirements. They can provide information on health certificates, visa requirements, and any travel advisories.

Costa Rica is a beautiful country with a diverse ecosystem that offers travelers a unique experience, but travelers should be aware of the potential health risks associated with traveling there. Mosquito-borne diseases, food and waterborne illnesses, sun exposure, and altitude sickness are some of the health risks that travelers should be aware of. While there are no specific inoculations or vaccinations required for travelers entering Costa Rica, travelers should ensure that their routine vaccinations are up to date and consider getting vaccinated against hepatitis A and B, typhoid fever, and rabies if applicable. Travelers arriving from countries with a risk of yellow fever transmission are required to provide a yellow fever vaccination certificate upon entry into Costa Rica. Reliable advice on health risks in Costa Rica can be obtained from the Costa Rican Ministry of Health, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and local Costa Rican embassies or consulates.


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