Health

DESTINATIONS israel health-32

TRAVEL TIPS

Health

No vaccinations are required to visit Israel. The country has one of the world's most advanced health-care systems. Most doctors at emergency clinics and hospitals in Israel speak English. Emergency and trauma care is among the best in the world.

It’s safe to drink tap water and eat fresh produce after it's been washed as well as food from outdoor stands. Heat stroke and dehydration are real dangers if you're going to be outdoors for any length of time. A sun hat and sunblock are musts, as is plenty of bottled water (available even in the most remote places) to guard against dehydration. Take at least one liter per person for every hour you plan to be outside. Use sunscreen with SPF 30 or higher. Most supermarkets and pharmacies carry sunscreen in a range of SPFs, but it’s much more expensive than in the United States.

U.S. brands of mosquito repellent with DEET are available in pharmacies and supermarkets. Wear light, long-sleeved clothing and long pants particularly at dusk, when mosquitoes are most likely to attack.

Yad Sarah is a nationwide voluntary organization that lends medical equipment and accessories such as wheelchairs, crutches, and canes. There’s no charge, but a contribution is expected. In Jerusalem, it's open Sunday to Thursday 8:30 to 6:45 and Friday 8:30 to 11:45. Equipment can be returned elsewhere in the country.

Over-the-Counter Remedies

At the pharmacy (beit mirkachat), it’s easy to find many of the same over-the-counter remedies as at home. Imodium (Rekamide) and Pepto-Bismol (the local version is Kal Beten) are available over the counter at every pharmacy. Everyday pain relievers such as Tylenol (called Acamol) and Advil are also widely available. You need a prescription for antibiotics. Medication can be obtained from pharmacies, which are plentiful. English is spoken in the majority of pharmacies. Locally produced medication is fairly inexpensive, but expect to pay more for drugs that are imported.

The municipal website of every city lists the pharmacies on duty at night, on Saturday, and holidays. This information is also available from Magen David Adom. In Jerusalem, Super-Pharm on the pedestrian mall is open Sunday to Thursday 8 am to 2 am, Friday 8:30 am to 4:30 pm, and Saturday one hour after the Sabbath ends until 2 am.

In Eilat, Michlin Pharmacy delivers to your hotel and is open Sunday to Thursday 8 am to 9 pm and Friday 8 to 3. Super-Pharm Mul Hayam is open Sunday to Thursday 9 am to 1 am, Friday 8:30 to midnight, and Saturday 9 am–1 am. There are also pharmacies in this region in Arad, Beersheva, and Mitzpe Ramon.

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