HEALTH

We need to say that all of the health information provided here is for guidance only and is based on our personal experience of living and working on the island (and Tanzania) for many years. For professional advice you need to speak to your doctor.

There are 3 main issues to be aware of before travelling:

Insurance:

We recommend that you provide yourself an insurance covering medical costs including full evacuation and repatriation. Furthermore you might consider including also loss, damage, theft, cancellation etc. If you are planning to do watersports (diving, kitesurfing and others) make sure these are included.

Malaria:

Malaria is an infectious disease caused by a parasite transmitted by mosquitoes, causing symptoms that typically include fever and headache, in severe cases progressing to death. It is widespread in tropical and subtropical regions.

In Zanzibar where the main malaria pathogen is Plasmodium falciparum, the introduction of artemisinin-based combination therapy in 2003 and the escalating ownership of insecticide-treated nets resulted in an important decrease in malaria prevalence. Nowadays the risk of getting malaria in Zanzibar is certainly very low and infections largely result from imported malaria and subsequent transmission which means that places at risk are mostly airport and ports.

Depending on the country you are coming from you might be prescribed anti-malarial pills, which generally provide a high level of protection but there are also several other practical measures that you can take to the reduce the chances of infection, as well as avoid the general discomfort of mosquito bites, most notably use an insect repellent. From our side we spray all our rooms during turn down between 19.30 and 20.00.

Medical kit:

In recent years the quality of local medical facilities and availability of drugs has improved enormously so it’s no longer essential to travel with large and well-equipped medical kits.

People attitudes vary a lot, so suggestions are not really easy however here is a small list of things that are essential or good to have at hands:

  • Sunblock
  • Lip balm
  • Bite cream
  • Antihistamines
  • Painkillers (aspirin, paracetamol or ibuprofen)
  • Eye / ear drops (preferably antibiotic)
  • Insect body spray repellent (essential).
  • Needle and tweezers for removing thorns, coral etc.
  • Anti-septic (liquids such as iodine although we normally have this in house)
  • Breathable plasters (while we always have plasters in house it can be difficult sometimes to find the breathable ones)