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).
Turkmenistan is a developing nation but is in the upper half of the world's economies. Located north of Iran and along the Caspian Sea in central Asia, its climate is subtropical desert.
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.
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.
See also: Library article for Travelers' Diarrhea
High risk exists throughout the country, with moderate risk 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
Leishmaniasis may pose a risk. Personal protective measures are important.
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 political instability and ongoing security concerns, Canada (GAC) and Australia (DFAT) advise avoiding travel to areas bordering Afghanistan. U.S. (DOS) and U.K. (FCO) have no current warnings.
No intrinsic risk of attack by terrorist groups exists, but unforeseen attacks are possible.
Risk of violent crime (armed robbery) exists throughout the country, especially in remote areas and at night.
Risk of petty crime exists throughout the country, especially on overnight trains and in markets.
Protests and demonstrations may infrequently occur and have the potential to turn violent without warning.
Difficulties and processing delays may be encountered in obtaining official permission to travel outside Ashgabat. Areas bordering Iran, Uzbekistan, and Afghanistan, including the city of Dashoguz and areas of the Caspian coast, are restricted zones. Travel to these areas is forbidden without prior permission from the government of Turkmenistan.
In the past, sporadic clashes have occurred overnight between security forces and armed groups in the outskirts of Ashgabat, causing deaths and injuries. The Afghanistan-Turkmenistan border is also to be avoided because of similar incidents.
Other Safety Threats
Curfews may be applied and areas may be cordoned off upon short notice. The violation of a curfew can result in immediate deportation and a ban against returning to Turkmenistan for 5 years.
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. The government monitors e-mail and Internet activity, and may block access to sensitive websites.
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 < 10 in most high-income countries. 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.
Seasonal flooding occurs.
Seismic activity frequently occurs.
Selected Embassies or Consulates in Turkmenistan
- United States: [+993] 12-94-00-45; tm.usembassy.gov
- Canada: Canada does not have an embassy or consulate in Turkmenistan.
- United Kingdom: [+993] 12-363462; www.gov.uk/world/organisations/british-embassy-ashgabat
- Australia: Australia does not have an embassy or consulate in Turkmenistan.
Turkmenistan's Embassies or Consulates in Selected Countries
- In the U.S.: turkmenistanembassy.org
- In Canada: Turkmenistan does not have an embassy or consulate in Canada.
- In the U.K.: uk.tmembassy.gov.tm
- In Australia: Turkmenistan does not have an embassy or consulate in Australia.
HIV testing is required to obtain a work or residence visa. Travelers, including short-term travelers, may be detained or deported after arrival if found to be positive for HIV or hepatitis.