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).
Iran is a developing nation but is in the upper half of the world's economies. Located in the Middle East, its climate is mostly arid or semiarid but subtropical along the Caspian Sea.
See also: Library article for Yellow Fever
Although yellow fever does not occur in Iran, an official yellow fever vaccination certificate may be required depending on your itinerary.
- Requirement: A vaccination certificate is required for travelers aged ≥ 9 months coming from countries with risk of YF transmission. Note: This applies to airport layovers longer than 12 hours in these countries.
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, typhoid fever, or a one time polio booster if you haven't previously received one for travel. Routine immunizations, such as those that prevent tetanus/diphtheria or "childhood" diseases, should be reviewed and updated as needed.
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)(2016) Malaria risk due to P. vivax and very limited risk due to P. falciparum exist from March through November in rural areas of the provinces of Hormozgan and Kerman (tropical part) and the southern part of Sistan and Baluchestan.
- 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: Rural areas of Fars Province, Sistan-Baluchestan Province, and southern, tropical parts of Hormozgan and Kerman Provinces.
- Estimated relative risk of malaria for US travelers: Very low.
- Drug resistance4: Chloroquine.
- Malaria species: P. vivax 93%, P. falciparum 7%.
- Recommended chemoprophylaxis: Atovaquone-proguanil, doxycycline, or mefloquine.
4 Refers to P. falciparum malaria unless otherwise noted.
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 brucellosis may be needed.
Insect- and Arthropod-Borne Diseases
Other Disease and Health Risks
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.
Consular Travel Advice
Due to ongoing security concerns, U.S. (DOS) advises avoiding all travel to this country. U.K. (FCO) advises avoiding travel within 100 km (62 mi) of the border with Afghanistan, within 10 km (6 mi) of the border with Iraq, and areas east of the cities of Bam (Kerman Province) and Jask (Hormozgan Province), including Sistan and Baluchestan Province. Canada (GAC) and Australia (DFAT) have more limited warnings.
Risk of attack by domestic and transnational terrorist groups exists throughout the country, especially in Tehran and Sistan and Baluchestan Province. Targets may include domestic and international organizations and businesses; public places and events, including those frequented by tourists; and transportation systems.
Risk of violent crime and petty crime exists throughout the country. Theft of valuables by criminals in passing vehicles is common.
Kidnappings by criminal groups may occur in areas bordering Pakistan and Iraq, including Khuzestan and Saistan and Baluchestan provinces.
Scams involving false identity (such as criminals posing as police officers) have been reported.
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. Disruption to transportation, free movement, or the ability to carry out daily activities may occur.
Other Safety Threats
There is heightened political tension and an unpredictable security situation in Iran. Acts of political violence occur throughout Iran, including in the capital Tehran. Targets for bomb attacks include foreign interests, Iranian government establishments, military parades and religious sites and processions.
The border with Iraq is usually closed. It can be opened on a case-by-case basis to allow the passage of certain foreigners or to allow refugees access to containment camps located on the Iranian side of the border.
Iranian security personnel may at times place foreign visitors under surveillance. Hotel rooms, telephones, and fax machines may be monitored, and personal possessions in hotel rooms may be searched.
Significant risk of traffic-related injury or death exists. The road-traffic death rate is > 24 per 100,000 population, the highest risk category. Carefully assess the safety of transportation options before any road travel. Driving at night is not advised. Seek local advice before traveling on roads outside urban areas after dark.
Traffic flows on the right-hand side of the road. Travelers (including drivers and pedestrians) accustomed to traffic moving on the opposite side should be vigilant when navigating traffic.
Sandstorms and dust storms occur.
Extreme heat (which can lead to heat-related illness) occurs from July through August.
Seismic activity frequently occurs.
Selected Embassies or Consulates in Iran
- United States: ir.usembassy.gov
- Canada: Canada does not have an embassy or consulate in Iran.
- United Kingdom: [+98] 21-6405-2000; www.gov.uk/government/world/organisations/uk-for-iranians
- Australia: [+98] 21-8872-4456; www.iran.embassy.gov.au
Iran's Embassies or Consulates in Selected Countries
- In the U.S.: www.daftar.org/Eng
- In Canada: 245 Metcalfe Street, Ottawa, ON, K2P 2K2
- In the U.K.: www.london.mfa.ir
- In Australia: www.canberra.mfa.ir
HIV and hepatitis testing may be required to obtain a tourist, work, or residence visa.