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Rabies vaccination for American traveler in London?

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Rabies vaccination for American traveler in London?

Hi all --

A slightly random question about UK healthcare for foreign travelers.

My travel companion was bit by a dog while in India and promptly received his first rabies vaccination in-country, but is now due for his second shot (on Day 3) after arriving in London. We'd like to know what is the best option for seeking post-exposure vaccination. He carries US-based health insurance but no travel insurance. Can you advise on 1) hospital vs. travel clinic and 2) likely cost?

Thanks!

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31 replies to this topic
London, United...
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1. Re: Rabies vaccination for American traveler in London?

Whereabouts in London is he? His best bet is probably to call a private GP service or a travel clinic. It's not an emergency so no point in visiting a hospital A&E department.

I assume he believes that his US insurance covers him or he would have taken out travel insurance.

Try these people, they have several locations and prices are shown on the website.

http://www.londontravelclinic.co.uk

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2. Re: Rabies vaccination for American traveler in London?

From the website referenced by brittraveller, though I am not clear if the sentence applies to the OP’s friend

‘Post Rabies Information

Please note we do not provide post-exposure Rabies vaccination. For all post Rabies vaccine and information, please go to the HTD website or UCLH A&E Department.“

HTD= the Hospital for Tropical Diseases.

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3. Re: Rabies vaccination for American traveler in London?

There are a number of private GP/travel clinics who should be able to help Locations and prices on their website (or call):

www.medicentre.co.uk/travel_clinic-1.htm

https:/…

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4. Re: Rabies vaccination for American traveler in London?

"no travel insurance"

Any reason why not?

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5. Re: Rabies vaccination for American traveler in London?

As per post 2 - do phone and ask what they advise. It may be that you should just present at a hospital A&E.

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6. Re: Rabies vaccination for American traveler in London?

Yes, sorry, I didn't notice the 'post exposure' note. I'd phone to check.

You might also call this private A&E to see if they can help.

theprincessgracehospital.com/hospital-servic…

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7. Re: Rabies vaccination for American traveler in London?

Irrespective of which NHS hospital provides the treatment they should charge (as will any private facility, but try the NHS first unless your insurer says otherwise). NHS charges foreigners a 'cost plus fee' (it was cost plus 50%, but it might be more) since I've no idea what the cost would be I can't help with the likely price.

But the NHS simply doesn't have any facility for dealing with travel or healthcare insurers so you'll have to pay first and claim back the cost if you can when you get home. Keep the paperwork!

Due to the nature of the US healthcare system (or the lack of a comprehensive 'system') the coverage that Brits would need for health care abroad is often included in US Health Insurance policies, so US travel insurance is a very different product to UK travel insurance, and frequently does not include cover for health care (as opposed to accident).

You'll need to check your US health care policy to see what it covers and what is excluded. Even if Rabies treatment is covered you may have a battle with your insurers - you'll know that they like to pre approve all expenditure, will argue for a lower cost alternative (or sometimes simply a different brand) and can generally be obstructive right down to challenging doctors as to the necessity of treatments.

If you call your insurer and tell them what's needed don't be surprised if they want to speak to the doctor, and don't get surprised if the UK doctor refuses to discuss anything with them! There is potential for a complete clash of cultures here with the result your outlay may prove impossible to reclaim. I'd start the process first by calling your insurer, there's a very remote chance they'll have a deal with a private UK healthcare company so ask about that before going to the NHS.

The only comfort is that at even cost plus 50% the NHS treatment is likely to be cheaper here than in the USA

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8. Re: Rabies vaccination for American traveler in London?

Not just any hospital. Go to the Hospital for Tropical Dieseases. They have specialist staff for this, which other hospitals don’t have.

9. Re: Rabies vaccination for American traveler in London?

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10. Re: Rabies vaccination for American traveler in London?

The Hospital for Tropical Diseases will either be able to do it or they can tell you who will.

If you can contact them beforehand that would be the best. It's important both for your partners health and not to interfere with your trip that you know where to go.

There are ways to contact them on their site further down this page

http://www.thehtd.org/

It is important to get this sorted before you travel. It's not a common need here in the Uk but for your friend it is really important.

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