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Do I need a rabies vaccination?

Page last updated 10 July 2018

The best way to avoid rabies is to avoid direct contact with dog’s and other animals that could be rabid. The rabies vaccination is not part of the Australian government immunisation program.

However, if you are planning on travelling overseas to a country where the risk of catching rabies is high including Central and South America, Africa, Asia, Indonesia, and North Eastern Europe, you should visit your GP or travel health specialist 4-6 weeks prior to travelling. They will assess the risk of exposure, access to healthcare resources overseas and potential access to post-bite treatments. 

Vaccination against rabies before travel simplifies the management if you are exposed to rabies, 

If you require rabies vaccine prior to travelling, a total of three vaccines will be required before departure.


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Sources & Citations

  1. The Australian Immunisation Handbook 10th Edition, 3.2 Vaccination for International Travel. Available at (accessed 5 April 2018).

SPANZ.RABIE.18.04.0156a - Date of preparation May 2018