On This Page

General Map

General map of Jamaica

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

Jamaica is a developing nation but is in the upper half of the world's economies. Located south of Cuba in the Caribbean Sea, its climate is tropical.

Immunizations

Yellow Fever

See also: Library article for Yellow Fever

Although yellow fever does not occur in Jamaica, an official yellow fever vaccination certificate may be required depending on your itinerary.

  • 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 longer than 12 hours in these countries.

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)

No statement given.

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

Areas with malaria: None.
Drug resistance: Not applicable.

Other Concerns

Travelers' Diarrhea

See also: Library article for Travelers' Diarrhea

Moderate 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

Chikungunya, dengue, West Nile virus, Zika may pose a risk. Personal protective measures are important.

Other Disease and Health Risks

Additional concerns include air pollution, helminths, leptospirosis, marine hazards, sexually transmitted infections.

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.

Consular Travel Advice

Due to ongoing security concerns, U.S. (DOS) advises avoiding travel to Spanish Town, Saint Catherine Parish, and some areas of Kingston and Montego Bay. U.K. (FCO), Canada (GAC), and Australia (DFAT) have no current warnings.

Terrorism Risk

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

Crime

High risk of violent crime (armed robbery, sexual assault, and murder) exists throughout the country, especially in Kingston (August Town, Harbour View, West Kingston, and Grant's Pen neighborhoods), Montego Bay (Flankers, Canterbury, Norwood, Mango Walk, Rose Heights, and Mount Salem neighborhoods; St. Clavers Avenue; and Hart Street), and Spanish Town. Sexual assaults occurring in beach resorts have often been perpetrated by resort or hotel employees.

Risk of petty crime exists throughout the country, especially in areas frequented by tourists (including resort areas).

Kidnappings by criminal groups may occur throughout the country, especially in Kingston, Montego Bay, and Spanish Town.

Scams involving ATMs, credit cards, and a wide range of financial activities have been reported.

Risk exists of robberies and/or assaults occurring after consuming intentionally drugged food or drink; tourists are frequently targeted (including in resorts).

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. Disruption to transportation, free movement, or the ability to carry out daily activities may occur.

Unsafe Areas

A dangerous security environment exists in several neighborhoods of Kingston, Montego Bay, and Spanish Town.

Water Safety

Rent water sports equipment from reputable operators. Scuba dive only with personnel certified by PADI or NAUI, and use equipment only from PADI- or NAUI-certified dive operators.

Transportation Safety

Risk of traffic-related injury or death exists. The road-traffic death rate is 7 to 12 per 100,000 population. The rate is < 10 in most high-income countries.

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.

Airline Safety

U.S. Federal Aviation Administration has determined that the civil aviation authority of this country oversees its air carriers in accordance with minimum international safety standards.

Natural Disasters

The hurricane season is from June through November. Floods, mudslides, and landslides may occur.

Seismic activity frequently occurs.

Consular Information

Selected Embassies or Consulates in Jamaica

  • United States: [+1-876] 702-6000; jm.usembassy.gov
  • Canada: [+1-876] 926-1500; www.jamaica.gc.ca
  • United Kingdom: [+1-876] 936 0700; www.gov.uk/world/organisations/british-high-commission-jamaica
  • Australia: [+1 876] 361 1332

Jamaica's Embassies or Consulates in Selected Countries

  • In the U.S.: www.embassyofjamaica.org
  • In Canada: www.jhcottawa.ca
  • In the U.K.: jhcuk.org
  • In Australia: [+61] 0402-205-266

Visa/HIV Testing

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