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Kiribati



Capital: Tarawa

Time Zone: +12 hours. No day light savings time in 2008.
Tel. Country Code: 686
USADirect Tel.: 0
Electrical Standards: Electrical current is 220/50 and 110/60 (volts/hz).South Pacific Style Adaptor Plug. Grounding Adaptor Plug E.

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Consular Information
Foreign Commonweatlh Office

Embassies


There is no U.S. Embassy in Kiribati. Americans living or traveling to Kiribati are encouraged to register with the U.S. Embassy in Suva, Fiji. The U.S. Embassy in Fiji is located at 31 Loftus Street in the capital city of Suva; telephone (679) 331-4�6; fax (679) 330-2�7. Information may also be obtained by visiting the Embassy抯 home page at http://suva.usembassy.gov/.

Canada is represented in Kiribati by the Canadian High Commission in Wellington, New Zealand
• Canadian High Commission
125 The Terrace
Wellington
New Zealand
Tel: [64] (4) 473 9577
E-mail: wlgtn@international.gc.ca
Consular emergencies outside office hours:
In case of an emergency outside business hours, a telephone call made to the High Commission on (4) 473 9577 will be automatically transferred to a consular officer in Ottawa. A collect call can be made to Ottawa at [1] (613) 996-8885.

There is no British consular representation in Kiribati. Routine consular services for British nationals on the island of Tarawa (the Gilbert Islands) are provided by the Australian High Commission in Tarawa. The British High Commission in Fiji is responsible for non-routine consular matters and matters on all other islands of Kiribati.
• Non-resident British High Commissioner
British High Commission
Victoria House
47 Gladstone Road
Suva
Fiji
Tel: [679] 3229100 (switchboard)
Fax: [679] 322 9132
Email: consularsuva@fco.gov.uk
Website: http://www.britishhighcommission.gov.uk/fiji

• Australian High Commission in Fiji
37 Princes Rd (Tamavua)
Suva
Fiji
Tel: [679] 338 2211
Fax: [679] 338 2065
Website: http://www.fiji.embassy.gov.au

Entry Requirements

HIV Test: Not required.

Required Vaccinations: A yellow fever vaccination certificate is required of travelers arriving from infected areas.

Passport Information

Passport/Visa: The Republic of Kiribati (pronounced kir-ree-bas) is an island group in the Western Pacific Ocean. It consists of an archipelago of some 33 low-lying coral atolls surrounded by extensive reefs, with a total land area of 800 square kilometers. Kiribati gained independence from the United Kingdom in 1979. Kiribati has an elected President and a legislative assembly. The capital city is Tarawa. Kiribati has few natural resources, and its economy is very small. Tourist facilities are not widely available.

ENTRY/EXIT REQUIREMENTS: A valid passport with a minimum of six months validity until expiration date and a visa are required. Kiribati strictly enforces its immigration/visa requirements. Westerners, including American citizens, have been detained for visa violations. For information on entry requirements, please contact the Consulate of the Republic of Kiribati, 95 Nakolo Place, Rm. 265, Honolulu, HI 96819, tel. (808) 834-6775, fax (808) 834-7604, or via e-mail kiribaticonsul@aol.com.

Vaccinations: Recommended and Routine

Hepatitis A: Recommended for all travelers >1 year of age not previously immunized against hepatitis A.

Hepatitis B: Recommended for all non-immune travelers at potential risk for acquiring this infection. Hepatitis B is transmitted via infected blood or bodily fluids. Travelers may be exposed by needle sharing and unprotected sex; from acupuncture, tattooing or body piercing; when receiving non-sterile medical or dental injections, or unscreened blood transfusions; by direct contact with open skin sores on an infected person. Recommended for long-term travelers, expatriates, and any traveler requesting protection against hepatitis B infection.

Influenza: Vaccination recommended for all travelers >6 months of age who have not received a flu shot in the previous 12 months.

Routine Immunizations: Immunizations against tetanus-diphtheria, measles, mumps, rubella (MMR vaccine) and varicella (chickenpox) should be updated, if necessary, before departure. MMR protection is especially important for any female of childbearing age who may become pregnant.
• The new Tdap vaccine, ADACEL, which also boosts immunity against pertussis (whooping cough) should be considered when a tetanus-diphtheria booster is indicated.

Typhoid: Recommended for all travelers with the exception of short-stay visitors who restrict their meals to hotels or resorts and cruise ship passengers.

Yellow Fever: A yellow fever vaccination certificate is required from travellers over 1 year of age coming from countries with risk of yellow fever transmission.

Hospitals / Doctors

Medical care is substandard throughout the country, including in Tarawa. Hospital accommodations are inadequate throughout the country and advanced technology is lacking.
All travelers should be up-to-date on their immunizations and are advised to carry a medical kit as well as antibiotics to treat travelers diarrhea or other infections. Travelers who are taking regular medications should carry them properly labeled and in sufficient quantity to last for the duration of their trip; they should not expect to obtain prescription or over-the-counter drugs in local stores or pharmacies in this country - the equivalent drugs may not be available or may be of unreliable quality.
• Travelers are advised to obtain comprehensive travel insurance with specific overseas coverage. Policies should cover: ground and air ambulance transport, including evacuation to home country; payment of hospital bills; 24-hour telephone assistance. Serious illness or injury may require medical evacuation to Australia or Hawaii.

Medical facilities include:
• Tungaru Central Hospital; general medical facility.
• Betio Hospital; general medical facility.

Destination Health Info for Travelers

AIDS/HIV: It is estimated that 0.4% of the adult population of Oceania is living with HIV/AIDS, but no statistics are currently available for Kiribati. The prevalence rate in Papua New Guinea is 1.8% of the adult population 15 to 49 years of age.
• Transmission of HIV can be prevented by avoiding: sexual contact with a high-risk partner; injecting drug use with shared needles; non-sterile medical injections; unscreened blood transfusions.
• The threat of HIV/AIDS should not be a primary concern for the traveler. However, there may be a concern for a subset of travelers who may be exposed to HIV, the virus that causes AIDS, through contact with the body fluid of another person or their blood. Although travel has contributed in a general way to the global spread of AIDS, fear of traveling because of this disease is not warranted.

Accidents & Medical Insurance: Accidents and injuries are the leading cause of death among travelers under the age of 55 and are most often caused by motor vehicle and motorcycle crashes; drownings, aircraft crashes, homicides, and burns are lesser causes.
• Heart attacks cause most fatalities in older travelers.
• Infections cause only 1% of fatalities in overseas travelers, but, overall, infections are the most common cause of travel-related illness.
• MEDICAL INSURANCE: Travelers are advised to obtain, prior to departure, supplemental travel health insurance with specific overseas coverage. The policy should provide for direct payment to the overseas hospital and/or physician at the time of service and include a medical evacuation benefit. The policy should also provide 24-hour hotline access to a multilingual assistance center that can help arrange and monitor delivery of medical care and determine if medevac or air ambulance services are required.

Dengue Fever: An outbreak of dengue fever was reported in October 2008. Dengue fever is a mosquito-transmitted, flu-like viral illness occurring throughout the Pacific Islands. Symptoms consist of sudden onset of fever, headache, muscle aches, and a rash. A syndrome of hemorrhagic shock can occur in severe cases. Dengue is transmitted via the bite of an infected Aedes aegypti mosquito. Aedes mosquitoes feed predominantly during daylight hours. All travelers are at risk and should take measures to prevent daytime mosquito bites. Insect-bite prevention measures include applying a DEET-containing repellent to exposed skin and applying permethrin spray or solution to clothing and gear.
• There is no vaccination or medication to prevent or treat dengue.
A dengue fever map is at: http://www.nathnac.org/ds/c_pages/documents/dengue_map.pdf

Filariasis: Filariasis is prevalent throughout the tropics and is caused by thread-like roundworms, called filaria, which are transmitted by mosquitoes and other insects. Repeated bites over several months to years are needed to get lymphatic filariasis. People living for a long time in tropical or sub-tropical areas where the disease is common are at the greatest risk for infection. Short-term tourists have a very low risk. An infection can be diagnosed on a blood test.
• There is no prophylactic medication. Insect-bite prevention measures are important to prevent filariasis as well as other insect-transmitted diseases, such as dengue fever, encephalitis, and malaria. (http://travelinghealthy.com/ch9.htm)

Hepatitis: All travelers not previously immunized against hepatitis A should be vaccinated against this disease. Travelers who are non-immune to hepatitis A (i.e. have never had the disease and have not been vaccinated) should take particular care to avoid potentially contaminated food and water. Travelers who will have access to safe food and water are at lower risk. Those at higher risk include travelers visiting friends and relatives, long-term travelers, and those visiting areas of poor sanitation.
• Hepatitis E is may be endemic but levels are unclear. Sporadic cases may be underdiagnosed or underreported. Transmission of the hepatitis E virus (HEV) occurs primarily through drinking water contaminated by sewage and also through raw or uncooked shellfish. Farm animals, such as swine, and also deer and wild boar, may serve as a viral reservoirs. (HEV is one of the few viruses which has been shown to be transmitted directly from animals through food.) In developing countries, prevention of hepatitis E relies primarily on the provision of clean water supplies and overall improved sanitation and hygiene. There is no vaccine.
• Hepatitis B is hyperendemic. The overall hepatitis B (HBsAg) carrier rate in the general population is estimated at >8%. Hepatitis B is transmitted via infected blood or bodily fluids. Travelers may be exposed by needle sharing and unprotected sex; from non-sterile medical or dental injections, and acupuncture; from unscreened blood transfusions; by direct contact with open skin lesions of an infected person. The average traveler is at low risk for acquiring this infection. Vaccination against hepatitis B is recommended for: persons having casual/unprotected sex with new partners; sexual tourists; injecting drug users; long-term visitors; expatriates, and anybody wanting increased protection against the hepatitis B virus.
• Hepatitis C is endemic at high level with a prevalence of 4.8% in the general population. Most hepatitis C virus (HCV) is spread either through intravenous drug use or, in lesser-developed countries, through blood contamination during medical procedures. Over 200 million people around the world are infected with hepatitis C - an overall incidence of around 3.3% of the population of the world. Statistically, as many people are infected with HCV as are with HIV, the virus that causes AIDS.

Influenza: Influenza is transmitted year-round in the tropics. All travelers should be immunized within the past 12 months.

Malaria: There is no risk of malaria in Kiribati.

Marine Hazards: Swimming related hazards include jellyfish, spiny sea urchins, and coral.
• Ciguatera poisoning is prevalent and can result from eating coral reef fish such as grouper, snapper, sea bass, jack, and barracuda. The ciguatoxin is not destroyed by cooking.

Rabies: Kiribati is presumed to be rabies-free but there is little surveillance information. All bite wounds, especially from a dog, should be thoroughly cleansed and then medically evaluated for possible post-exposure treatment.

Travelers' Diarrhea: Outside of hotels and resorts, we recommend that you boil, filter or purify all drinking water or drink only bottled water or other bottled beverages and do not use ice cubes. Avoid unpasteurized dairy products. Do not eat raw or undercooked food, especially meat, fish, raw vegetables. Peel all fruits.
• Good hand hygiene reduces the incidence of travelers• diarrhea by 30%.
• A quinolone antibiotic, or azithromycin, combined with loperamide (Imodium), is recommended for the treatment of diarrhea. Diarrhea not responding to antibiotic treatment may be due to a parasitic disease such as giardiasis, amebiasis, or cryptosporidiosis.
• Seek qualified medical care if you have bloody diarrhea and fever, severe abdominal pain, uncontrolled vomiting, or dehydration.

Tuberculosis (TB): Tuberculosis is highly endemic in Kiribati with an annual occurrence was greater than or equal to 40 cases per 100,000 population. Tuberculosis (TB) is transmitted following inhalation of infectious respiratory droplets. Most travelers are at low risk. Travelers at higher risk include those who are visiting friends and relatives (particularly young children), long-term travelers, and those who have close contact, prolonged contact with the local population. There is no prophylactic drug to prevent TB. Travelers with significant exposure should have PPD skin testing done to evaluate their risk of infection.

Typhoid Fever: Typhoid fever is the most serious of the Salmonella infections. Typhoid vaccine is recommended by the CDC for all people (with the exception of short-term visitors who restrict their meals to hotels or resorts) traveling to or working in Oceania, especially if visiting smaller cities, villages, or rural areas and staying with friends or relatives where exposure might occur through food or water. Current vaccines against Salmonella typhi are only 50-80% protective and do not protect against Salmonella paratyphi, the cause of paratyphoid fever. (Paratyphoid fever bears similarities with typhoid fever, but the course is generally more benign.) Travelers should continue to practice strict food, water and personal hygiene precautions, even if vaccinated.