Safe Travels

March 30, 2023

As COVID-19 restrictions have drastically relaxed since being officially declared a global pandemic three years ago, more and more Americans may decide to travel abroad.

However, if you plan to travel overseas, besides receiving the COVID-19 vaccine, your destination could require traditional immunization before your arrival. You’ll need to obtain and fill out the International Certificate of Vaccination from the Center for Disease Control (CDC) and the World Health Organization (WHO).

The International Certificate of Vaccination or Prophylaxis, also known as the “Yellow Card,” is designed to support infectious disease control world-wide. And with global travel expanding as some nations have eased restrictions, the health and safety of Americans is now important than ever.

Prior to booking your trip, you must visit a healthcare provider and receive required vaccinations that will vary depending on your destination. The attending doctor must list vaccinations given on the form per the instructions, then sign and date in order for the Certificate of Vaccination to be valid. Every traveler must keep the “Yellow Card” on their person while traveling as it serves as a medical passport and proof of vaccination.

Medical providers, state health agencies, travel agents, as well as churches and community services, may want to obtain these handy and universally accepted immunization forms that are needed to go outside the country.

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About the author: Blogger contributor Ed Kessler is a Promotions Specialist in GPO’s Publication and Information Sales program office.

Images and additional content provided by Government Book Talk Editor Trudy Hawkins. Trudy is the Senior Marketing & Promotions Specialist in GPO’s Publication & Information Sales Office supporting the U.S. Government Online Bookstore (

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