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General Map

General map of Guyana

Medical Summary

The health risk information presented here is summarized from Shoreland Travax®, a decision-support tool used by health care providers to perform a detailed health risk analysis based on specific locations, individual travel styles, and traveler risk behaviors. Travax provides practitioners current, independently researched malaria risk and prevention recommendations in a map-based format that goes beyond the annual WHO and CDC statements included here. Not included here are current reports from Travax of disease outbreaks or environmental events that may pose elevated risks to travelers’ health and safety. The Providers section of this site offers a directory of health care providers who utilize Shoreland Travax for travel health counseling. Learn more about the detailed reports and maps available from these practitioners (includes links to samples).

General Information

Guyana is a developing nation but is in the upper half of the world's economies. Located between Suriname and Venezuela in South America, its climate is tropical, with distinct dry and rainy seasons.

Immunizations

Yellow Fever

See also: Library article for Yellow Fever

An official yellow fever vaccination certificate may be required depending on your itinerary. Vaccination is usually recommended if you’ll be traveling in areas where there is risk of yellow fever transmission.

  • Requirement: A vaccination certificate is required for travelers aged ≥ 1 year coming from countries with risk of YF transmission. Note: This applies to airport layovers in these countries.
  • Official Status: listed by WHO as a country where YF transmission risk is present.

Other Vaccines

Depending on your itinerary, your personal risk factors, and the length of your visit, your health care provider may offer you vaccination against hepatitis A, hepatitis B, influenza, measles, mumps, rubella, rabies, or typhoid fever. Routine immunizations, such as those that prevent tetanus/diphtheria or "childhood" diseases, should be reviewed and updated as needed.

Malaria

See also: Library article for Malaria

The following is current information as reported by the World Health Organization (WHO) and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control (CDC):

WHO—International Travel and Health (current online update, Country List)

(2015) Malaria risk — P. vivax (36%), P. falciparum (53%), mixed infections (11%) – is high throughout the year in all partsof the interior. Risk is highest in regions 1 and 7–9, and very low in regions 3–6. Sporadic cases of malaria have beenreported from the densely populated coastal belt.Chloroquine‐resistant P. falciparum reported.
  • Recommended prevention in risk areas: C – Risk of P. falciparum malaria, in combination with reported chloroquine and sulfadoxine–pyrimethamine resistance. Mosquito bite prevention plus atovaquone–proguanil or doxycycline or mefloquine chemoprophylaxis (select according to reported side effects and contraindications) a
    aAlternatively, for travel to rural areas with low risk of malaria infection, mosquito bite prevention can be combined with stand–by emergency treatment (SBET).

WHO Country List footnote: When available, the date of the most recent update or confirmation is indicated in parentheses in the country list. If no date is indicated, the most recent update or confirmation was provided before 2013.

CDC—Health Information for International Travel (current online edition)

Areas with malaria: All areas < 900 m (2,953 ft). Rare cases in the cities of Amsterdam and Georgetown.
  • Estimated relative risk of malaria for US travelers: High.
  • Drug resistance4: Chloroquine.
  • Malaria species: P. falciparum 50%, P. vivax 50%.
  • Recommended chemoprophylaxis: Areas with malaria except cities of Amsterdam and Georgetown: Atovaquone-proguanil, doxycycline, or mefloquine. Cities of Georgetown and Amsterdam: Mosquito avoidance only.
    4 Refers to P. falciparum malaria unless otherwise noted.

Other Concerns

Travelers' Diarrhea

See also: Library article for Travelers' Diarrhea

High risk exists throughout the country, including in deluxe accommodations. Food and beverage precautions may reduce the likelihood of illness.

Travelers should carry loperamide for self-treatment of diarrhea and, if risk is moderate to high, an antibiotic to add if diarrhea is severe. Consult a knowledgeable health care provider regarding which antibiotic is appropriate for you and most effective for your destination.

Other Food-Borne Illnesses

Precautions to prevent seafood poisoning may be needed.

Insect- and Arthropod-Borne Diseases

Chagas' disease (American trypanosomiasis), chikungunya, dengue, leishmaniasis, Zika may pose a risk. Personal protective measures are important.

Other Disease and Health Risks

Additional concerns include helminths, marine hazards, sexually transmitted infections, snakebites, tuberculosis.

Consular Advice

The material below includes information from the U.S. Department of State (DOS), U.K. Foreign & Commonwealth Office (FCO), Global Affairs Canada (GAC), and Australia's Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT), as well as from additional open-source material. Standard safety precautions that apply to all international travel can be found in the Library article Safety and Security.

Terrorism Risk

No intrinsic risk of attack by terrorist groups exists, but unforeseen attacks are possible.

Crime

High risk of violent crime (armed robbery, carjacking, and murder) and petty crime exists throughout the country, especially in Georgetown (Stabroek Market, Tiger Bay, South Georgetown, and Sea Wall areas), Demerara-Mahaica Region (Buxton, Lusignan, Friendship, and Annadale villages and the east bank of the Demerara River), and New Amsterdam, East Berbice-Corentyne Region.

Scams involving pirated merchandise have been reported.

Civil Unrest

Protests and demonstrations occur throughout the country and have the potential to turn violent without warning. Bystanders are at risk of harm from violence or from the response by authorities.

Unsafe Areas

A dangerous security environment may exist in interior areas of the country.

Territorial disputes may occur in areas bordering Suriname and Venezuela.

Piracy (involving commercial and private, leisure vessels) occurs in coastal waters.

Transportation Safety

High risk of traffic-related injury or death exists. The road-traffic death rate is 12 to 24 per 100,000 population. The rate is less than 10 in most high-income countries. Speed laws are poorly enforced. Driving at night is not advised. Seek local advice before traveling on roads outside urban areas after dark.

Traffic flows on the left-hand side of the road. Travelers (including drivers and pedestrians) accustomed to traffic moving on the opposite side should be vigilant when navigating traffic.

Public buses, public vans, rail services, and taxis do not meet international safety standards (due to unsafe vehicles, poor maintenance, and hazardous driving).

Avoid road travel outside of urban areas after dark, especially on roads between Cheddi Jagan Airport and Georgetown and between the towns of Timehri and Linden.

Many taxis are unsafe. Use taxis from official ranks or dispatched via smart phone app or radio from a reputable company and ascertain the license or identification number of the dispatched vehicle.

Airline Safety

U.S. Federal Aviation Administration has determined that the civil aviation authority of this country does not oversee its air carriers in accordance with minimum international safety standards.

Natural Disasters

The rainy season is from May through August and from November through January. Floods, mudslides, and landslides may occur, especially in coastal areas.

Consular Information

Selected Embassies or Consulates in Guyana

  • United States: [+592] 225-4900/9; gy.usembassy.gov
  • Canada: [+592] 227-2081; www.guyana.gc.ca
  • United Kingdom: [+592] 226-5881; www.gov.uk/world/organisations/british-high-commission-georgetown
  • Australia: [+592] 665-1198

Guyana's Embassies or Consulates in Selected Countries

  • In the U.S.: www.guyanaembassyusa.org
  • In Canada: [+1] 613-235-7249
  • In the U.K.: www.guyanahclondon.co.uk
  • In Australia: Guyana does not have an embassy or consulate in Australia.

Visa/HIV Testing

HIV testing is not required to obtain a tourist, work, or residence visa.