As children finish school and the summer vacation season gets underway, regular or occasional readers of American Family Physician should know about all of the free resources available for prevention and management of medical conditions in travelers, the best of which are included in our Travel Medicine collection. Brush up on key components of the pretravel consultation for international travelers, including vaccination updates and malaria prophylaxis. Patients who plan to play in the water can be provided with recommendations for preventing recreational waterborne illnesses and tips for avoiding neurologic complications of scuba diving or surfing-related injuries. And anyone can learn to recognize and prevent heat-related illness.Depending on the vacation destination, clinicians may need to counsel patients on risk factors and symptoms of altitude illness (which includes acute mountain sickness and less commonly, cerebral and pulmonary edema) or emerging vector-borne diseases such as West Nile virus, Dengue, Chikungunya, and, of course, Zika virus. A 2015 editorial reviewed advice for protection against mosquitoes and ticks that carry these and other diseases (such as Lyme disease, which doesn’t always present with a classic “bull’s eye” rash).And whether your own summer plans include going on a medical humanitarian mission or just relaxing at your favorite fishing hole, AFP has you covered. Clinicians who plan to spend time near any body of water – including the backyard swimming pool – should consider familiarizing themselves with the essentials of prevention and treatment of drowning.You can access patient education handouts on all of these activities and more from AFP and FamilyDoctor.org at home or on the go. Stay safe, and have fun!**A slightly different version of this post originally appeared on the AFP Community Blog.
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