This LOCOG photo shows both sides of the gold medal to awarded during the London 2012 Olympics.

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Wise Advice for Attending the Olympic Games

Vaccinations, travel health insurance, and knowing the location of emergency exits while at large events are among CDC's tips for U.S. travelers.

Measles is one concern identified by CDC in its tips for Americans who plan to attend the 2012 Olympic Games soon in London. Measles was declared eliminated in the United States a dozen years ago, but it is still common worldwide, where vaccination rates may be lower.

"So there's a risk of being exposed to measles while you're overseas," a post on the CDC Public Health Matters blog noted. "If you're not vaccinated, you put yourself and others at risk for measles and its complications, like pneumonia, encephalitis, or even death. Luckily, the measles vaccine is highly effective. So if you're planning to travel overseas this summer, make sure you and your family are up to date on all vaccinations, including the measles vaccine."

The agency also recently offered a tipsheet for avoiding illness and injury while traveling to London. The tips included these items:

  • Being up to date on all of your shots, including checking with your doctor to find out whether you need a tetanus/diptheria/pertussis booster.
  • Looking right, left, and right again before crossing a road in England, where motorists drive on the left side of the road.
  • Call 999, not 911, and ask for A&E (Accident and Emergency) if a serious illness or injury occurs.
  • Consider buying travel health insurance before traveling because your U.S. health insurance probably will not cover you while you're overseas.
  • Always wear a seat belt.
  • Wash your hands frequently or use hand sanitizer.
  • When outdoors during the day, wear sunscreen, stay hydrated, and see shade if you're hot.
  • When indoors or at large events, know where the emergency exits are.

About the Author

Jerry Laws is Editor of Occupational Health & Safety magazine, which is owned by 1105 Media Inc.

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