Travelling is a risky business when health is overlooked – UQ News

Australians heading abroad are ignoring potential well being dangers out of a need to flee actuality by means of journey, based on College of Queensland-led analysis.

Dr Jie Wang from UQ Business School led the examine in partnership with colleagues and Dr Deborah Mills from Travel Medicine Alliance.

The examine discovered many travellers selected to not undertake protecting behaviours comparable to consulting well being professionals, shopping for journey insurance coverage or receiving acceptable vaccines, partly due to maladaptive perceptions.

“Maladaptive perceptions can not directly affect folks to behave in ways in which improve danger or hazard,” Dr Wang stated.

“They’ll negatively have an effect on your private well being behaviour.”

The analysis crew surveyed virtually 300 Australians who had travelled to Indonesia, Thailand and Vietnam within the previous three years to realize a broad understanding of well being danger perceptions.  

Avoidance and vacation spirit had been recognized as the commonest forms of travellers’ maladaptive perceptions.

“Avoidance is about folks eager to push away unfavorable emotions and never take into consideration dangers,” Dr Wang stated.

“Virtually half of our analysis individuals believed they may merely keep away from contact with wild animals in South-East Asia, eliminating their want to fret about illnesses like rabies.

 “They didn’t hassle with a rabies vaccine as a result of they didn’t really feel it was wanted.”  

Nevertheless, journey medication specialist Dr Mills stated it was not at all times doable to keep away from these dangers.  

“Many Australians are unaware of the danger of contracting rabies abroad as a result of we don’t have animals with this illness right here,” Dr Mills stated.

“However most individuals affected by rabies aren’t going out of their option to pat or contact wild animals.

“Take the Balinese monkeys that soar on folks’s shoulders, or the canine that chew travellers as they’re strolling into a store.”  

The examine additionally discovered that vacation spirit – the tendency to concentrate on pleasure-seeking and enjoyable – influenced greater than one-third of individuals to disregard well being dangers.

With round ten million Australians travelling abroad yearly, Dr Wang stated it was extra vital than ever to appropriate such perceptions. 

“Our analysis may assist tourism practitioners, public well being our bodies and authorities businesses educate the general public,” she stated.

“Highlighting why travellers ought to do one thing so simple as having a pre-travel well being session 4 to 6 weeks earlier than departure or taking out journey insurance coverage may assist cut back the unfavorable well being outcomes of worldwide journey.”

A second part of the examine is underway, specializing in how you can design particular and persuasive well being danger messages for travellers.

The examine has been revealed in Annals of Tourism Research (

Media: Dr Jie Wang,, +61 7 3346 0758; BEL Communications,, +61 7 3346 9349.

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