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 US 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).
Jamaica is a developing nation classified as upper middle income. Located in the Caribbean Sea (south of Cuba), the climate is classified as humid equatorial (long dry season).
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 certificate proving yellow fever vaccination is required for travelers aged ≥ 1 year coming from countries with risk of YF transmission. This also applies to airport transit stops (no exit through immigration checkpoint) longer than 12 hours in risk countries.
Depending on your itinerary, your personal risk factors, and the length of your visit, your health care provider may offer you vaccination against COVID-19, 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 US 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
Moderate risk exists throughout the country, including in deluxe accommodations. Community sanitation and food safety measures may be inadequate. Some itineraries (e.g., remote destinations, austere accommodations) and activities (e.g., ecotourism, eating street or local-market food) further increase risk.
Travelers should observe food and beverage precautions, which 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
Other Disease and Health Risks
The material below includes information from the US Department of State (DOS), the UK Foreign, Commonwealth & Development 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, US (DOS) advises avoiding all travel to the following areas: Areas of Saint Ann Parish: Steer Town and the Buckfield neighborhood near Ocho Rios. Areas of Saint Catherine Parish: Spanish Town, Central Village, areas of Portmore (Naggo Head, New Land, Old Braeton, Portmore Lane, Gregory Park, and Waterford). Clarendon Parish: all of Clarendon Parish, except passing through via the T1 and A2 highways. Areas of Saint Elizabeth Parish: Vineyard neighborhood near Alligator Pond. Areas of Hanover Parish: Logwood and Orange Bay. Areas of Saint James Parish/Montego Bay: All of Montego Bay on the inland side of the A1 highway and The Queen’s Drive from San San to Harmony Beach Park. Areas of Kingston and Saint Andrew Parish: Cassava Piece, downtown Kingston (defined as between Mountain View Avenue and Hagley Park Road, and south of Half Way Tree and Old Hope Roads; downtown Kingston includes Arnett Gardens, Cockburn Gardens, Denham Town, Olympic Gardens, Seaview Gardens, Trench Town, and Tivoli Gardens), Duhaney Park, Grants Pen, Standpipe, Swallowfield, Elleston Flats, August Town. Areas of Manchester Parish: Green Vale, Gray Ground, Red Ground, and Vineyard neighborhoods of Mandeville. Areas of Saint Thomas Parish: Black Lane neighborhood in Seaforth, Grands Penn, Church Corner neighborhood near Yallahs, Town of Yallahs (except when driving through on the main highway). Areas of Trelawny Parish: Clarks Town. Areas of Westmoreland Parish: Russia community in Savanna la Mar (the southeastern quadrant of Savannah la Mar east of Darling Street and south of the A2 highway/Barracks Road), Morgan Bay, Kings Valley, the Whitehall, Bethel Town, and Red Ground neighborhoods of east Negril.
The US (DOS) advises reconsidering travel (or avoiding nonessential travel) to the rest of this country. UK (FCO), Canada (GAC), and Australia (DFAT) have no current warnings.
No intrinsic risk of attack by terrorist groups exists, but unforeseen attacks are possible.
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; Hart Street), and Spanish Town. Sexual assaults occurring in beach resorts have often been perpetrated by resort or hotel employees.
Moderate risk of petty crime exists throughout the country, especially in areas frequented by tourists (including resort areas).
Risk exists of robberies and/or assaults occurring after consuming intentionally drugged food or drink; tourists are frequently targeted (including in resorts).
Protests and demonstrations may infrequently occur 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.
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.
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.
Seat belt laws are poorly enforced.
Drunk driving laws are poorly enforced.
There are no restrictions on mobile phone usage while driving.
Structural standards for vehicles may not meet international standards.
The hurricane season is from June through November. Floods, mudslides, and landslides may occur.
Seismic activity frequently occurs.
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.: www.jhcuk.org
- In Australia: [+61] 0402-205-266
HIV testing may be required to obtain a work or residence visa.