Tourist health in Tunisia

Vaccination - health risks - sun protection - health insurance

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Please visit for actual information the Tunesien-Forum (german language forum, - Google translation is being provided on-site)

Which vaccinations do I need for Tunisia?
Can I drink tap water in Tunisia?
Are there english-speaking doctors in Tunisia?
Which sunscreen do I need in Tunisia?
Do I have to pay for a doctor's visit in Tunisia in cash?
Do I need a private travel health insurance?

For a typical holiday in Tunisia, one needs no special vaccinations. Even with long-term travelers who are in the tourist areas, vaccinations for Tunisia are usually not necessary because of the low risk.


In Tunisia, there is generally and at any time a risk of falling sick from jaundice (Hepatitis A and B), Malaria, Rabies (eg. transmitted by stray dogs, of which there are about 1 million in Tunisia, also in the tourist areas!), Tetanus, Meningitis (caused by ticks) and various diseases of the gastrointestinal tract (don't drink ice-cold drinks!), depending on where you are and how and what food you eat.

In this respect, travelers should check or complete his vaccine protection, depending on the risk they are willing to take and the nature of their stay in Tunisia!

In general, at least in the tourist zones and large cities, drinking tap water is not dangerous. One might to have get used to a high chlorine content first, though (and also, in Tunesien fluorine is being added to the tap water). In general, the salt/nitrate level is high in tunisia tap water.
As an alternative, one can buy mineral water (non-carbonated) in shops in plastic bottles, these are widely available and inexpensive.

In Tunisia, the sun is extremely strong, suitable sun protection measures must therefore be taken, even in winter. Children always need the highest sun protection factor (preferably 50+) available!
Like the locals, in the months of June-September, tourists should minimize exposure to - or avoid - direct sunlight between 11am and 4pm.

Tunisia has, at least in the big cities, hospitals whose facilities are often at the European level and where physicians work, who have studied at least some time in Europe.
Especially "private clinics" offer a quality that one is accustomed to from western countries albeit at a higher price than the state hospitals.

Tunisia has several high quality (private) clinics for dialysis, but also surgeries and clinics for eye laser treatment and surgery (cosmetic surgery). The prices are considerably lower than in many western countries.

All physicians and pharmacists in Tunisia speak French, and most an acceptable English as well, but only a few speak German, Russian, Italian or another language.

All treatments and medicine must always be paid in cash in Tunisia, the expenses are then refunded by the Tunisian health insurance, this system also applies to foreign tourists (here: reimbursement by health insurance in the home country).
A doctor's fee is at 35-75 Tunisian Dinars, which is ca. 15-20 EUR/UKP/USD. A doctor's house visit will double this fee.
In any case, the conclusion of a private travel health insurance is recommended.

ATTENTION! Since autumn of 2018, Tunisian pharmacies have sometimes been experiencing a "lack of medicines", which may also extend to trivial medicines (analgesics, contraceptives, etc.). Hospitals are less, but still affected. This shortage is caused both by payment problems of the pharmacies, as well as missing foreign currency of the state.

Tourists who require certain medicines should, therefore, bring those with them, in sufficient quantities, from home!
The import of medicines for personal use is easily possible in Tunisia, but one should have a medical letter confirming the need for the traveler!

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