Severe flooding in Pakistan
Level 2 - Practise enhanced health precautions (more details)
Original publication date: September 29, 2022
Updated: October 4, 2022
The Pakistani government has declared a national emergency due to monsoon rains which have caused severe flooding throughout the country. Hundreds of health facilities have been severely damaged, and access to health services is limited. There has also been damage to roads, bridges and other infrastructure, significant casualties, and millions of people have been displaced.
Travellers should stay away from flood-affected areas, including parts of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Sindh, and Balochistan.
Depending on your destination, there could be disruptions to the following essential services:
- clean water and food supply
- emergency services
- medical care
- mosquito control
As a result of the flooding, the country is reporting an increase in water-borne illnesses and other infections such as malaria, measles, dengue, COVID-19, and polio.
Be prepared to modify your travel arrangements on short notice, and to comply with any evacuation orders. Monitor local media to stay informed of the evolving situation.
Before your trip
- Consult a health care professional, preferably 6 weeks before you travel, to discuss vaccinations and medications you may want to consider.
- Review the Travel Advice and Advisories page for Pakistan. This page contains additional information on health risks and other important travel information.
- Make sure your routine vaccinations are up-to-date.
- Pack a travel health kit and purchase travel health insurance.
During your trip
Practise safe food and water precautions
Flooding and standing water increase the risk of water-borne diseases such as:
Protect yourself from insect bites at all times.
Flooding and standing water also increase the risk of insect-related diseases such as:
Avoid contact with animals
Depending on your travel plans, a health care professional might recommend getting vaccinated against rabies before you travel.
If bitten or scratched, immediately clean the wound and seek medical attention.
Protect yourself against injury and illness
If travelling to areas affected by the monsoon flooding:
- Follow the instructions of local authorities.
- Monitor local news to stay informed on the current situation.
- Avoid contact with flood or standing water that may be contaminated.
- Avoid downstream areas and keep to higher grounds.
- Wash your hands often with soap under warm running water for at least 20 seconds.
- Use alcohol-based hand sanitizer (containing at least 60% alcohol) if soap and water are not available. It's a good idea to always keep some with you when you travel.
- Wear appropriate sturdy footwear in all disaster-affected areas.
If you are travelling to the affected areas to support relief efforts (aid workers), protect yourself. Use personal protective equipment as indicated by the coordinating relief organization. These may include gloves, gowns, safety glasses, boots, and hard hats.
After your trip
Seek medical attention if you are injured, sick, or having trouble coping with stress after you return to Canada. Tell the health care professional:
- where you have travelled
- what activities you participated in (e.g. disaster relief work)
Registration of Canadians Abroad
Sign up with the Registration of Canadians Abroad service to stay connected with the Government of Canada in case of an emergency abroad or an emergency at home.
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