What are the Vaccination Rules for Hajj Pilgrims in Saudi Arabia?

Every year, millions of Muslims perform Hajj in Saudi Arabia. These Muslims belong to different nations. As atmosphere differs from nation to nation, people tend to get ill. They tend to catch up infectious diseases. Or in another case, they may come along being equipped with certain viral and infectious diseases. These diseases can affect the health of others and cause a lot of problems. This issue was a due concern for Saudi authorities, so they issued a vaccination rules for the Hajj Pilgrims.

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These pilgrims, according to the regulation, must be vaccinated before they enter Saudi Arabia for the purpose of Hajj. According to the Ministry of Health, the vaccination and health requirements have been disclosed to those applying for Hajj visas. It has been assured that the Ministry of Foreign affairs has sent a detail of vaccination requirement to different nations. This year, special concerns are for the following vaccinations:

1-Yellow fever: There are some countries that are at a high risk of Yellow fever, the pilgrims arriving from these countries shall be equipped with a yellow fever vaccination certificate. This rule was incorporated as per international health regulations of 2005.  The certificate is a lifetime certificate whose validity starts from the 11th day of vaccination. So any pilgrim from yellow fever infected country, either coming through air, land or water, shall first submit a certificate declaring that he/she is not infected with yellow fever. The method for claiming disinfection shall comply with the World Health Organization’s declared method.

2-Meningitis: It is a compulsory vaccination for both local and foreign pilgrims.

3-Polio: There are some states who still are suffering from Polio. These states include Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Nigeria. All pilgrims (belonging to every age group) from such states shall have a receipt claiming that they have been vaccinated against polio. The vaccination can be either oral polio vaccine or inactivated polio vaccine. The pilgrim must be vaccinated four weeks or maximum a year before their departure for Hajj.

There are some states like Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, Guinea, Laos, Madagascar, Myanmar, Niger, Ukraine, Democratic Republic of Congo, Equatorial Guinea, Ethiopia, Iraq, Kenya, Liberia, Sierra Leone, Somalia, South Sudan, Syria, and Yemen who have combat Polio, yet they are very much vulnerable towards it. The pilgrims from these states shall also be vaccinated against Polio.

4-Seasonal influenza: The local and the foreign pilgrims do not necessarily have to get vaccinated against the flu. Yet it is advisable that they get vaccinated against flu as per the climatic changes. Those pilgrims, who are high-risk patients, i.e. those suffering from diseases like Hypertension, diabetes, and problems related to the renal, shall take the flu vaccine. This is an advice coming from an expert. This vaccine shall help them perform their Hajj without facing serious medical issues.

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5-Zika virus

6-Dengue

7-Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS)

8-Cholera

Indeed, this vaccination requirement rule is necessary for the health of the pilgrims. Praising the efforts of the Saudi authorities, a WHO expert at cholera, Dominique Legros said that a good initiative has been taken.

Source: Gulf News

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