FAQ

 

Why is there an appointment fee and injection fees?

Our travel health professionals have undergone extensive training and education in their chosen field.   Having an appointment where you receive a personalized plan to keep you safe and healthy on your trip is a service.  Accessing this knowledge is very similar to having an appointment with a doctor, lawyer, accountant, or other professional.    Travel health consultations are not covered by Alberta Health Care, so this fee needs to be directly paid for by the patient.

What happens during my pre-travel consultation?

During your travel health appointment, a travel health consultant will evaluate your risks based on the trip details and your health status.  You will receive education (including written materials), as well as recommendations for the appropriate vaccinations and prescriptions for you.  Prescriptions and vaccines are available on site and can usually be prepared and administered immediately after the consultation is completed.

I found a couple of websites and I’ve figured out what I need on my own.  I just need someone to give me the shots.

A lot of information can be accessed online and by having conversations with family and friends who have traveled to the same locales.  Discussing with a professional trained in this area can provide you with context.   Our practitioners provide more information than just running through a list of vaccinations.  They will analyze your health history and the details of your trip. After reviewing this information and asking you some follow up questions to complete the picture, they will determine what specific measures are most appropriate to keep you healthy and safe.  Our providers keep up to date with the latest information regarding global outbreaks of illness and the most appropriate preventative measures and treatment.

How long will my appointment take?

You can expect the appointment to take between 30 and 60 minutes.  The comprehensive appointment typically takes about 30 minutes to complete.  If you are getting any vaccines or prescriptions, that would account for another 15-30 minutes on average.  A basic appointment (where you have time to talk with us and ask questions, but is not as comprehensive) take about 10 minutes and then vaccinations will take another 15 minutes.

An appointment for a booster dose of a vaccine will usually take less than 30 minutes.  The actual injection only takes a few minutes, but we request you be monitored for 15 minutes afterward.

How far in advance should I book my appointment?

Ideally, you should book your appointment between 6 and 8 weeks before travelling.  Some vaccines need more than one dose before you travel, and some vaccines take time after being given to become effective.  However, there can still be benefits to having an appointment at the last minute.  Our travel health consultants will be able to offer you some options that may offer some protection.

Does Alberta Health Care pay for travel health services?

Travel health consultations and travel immunizations are not covered by Alberta Health Care.  Some private health care plans through employers will pay for some travel vaccines and prescriptions. Polaris Travel Clinic and Pharmacy can bill some prescription drug benefit plans directly.  Make sure to present your direct billing prescription card at your appointment. Travel health consultations can sometimes be billed to a health spending account plan.  Check with your insurance provider for details.

What should I bring to my appointment?

Please bring as much information about your travel plans and itinerary as you have available.  Also bring a list of current medications and your vaccinations records.

I can’t find my vaccination records.  How can I access this information? 

If you were vaccinated in Alberta, check with the Alberta Health Services Immunization Records request service.  You can also phone 403-214-3641 (Calgary area).

Can’t you just tell me what I need for my trip over the phone?

Our phones are usually answered by reception staff who are not qualified to provide medical advice.  Even if the receptionist was able to connect you with one of our travel health providers, giving this information would still not be that simple.  Every patient has their own unique health history and travel plans.  Our travel health consultants cannot responsibly provide specific recommendations for your trip in a five minute phone call.   If you would like to receive the benefit of our practitioner’s knowledge, you can get it at a pre-travel consultation appointment.

Why can’t I just go to my family doctor for a pre-travel consultation?

Some family doctors may see patients for travel health appointments, but we have found that many family doctors prefer to send patients to travel clinics.  Often they have enough trouble fitting in all of their other types of appointments during their day, and they would prefer to send their patients to a travel clinic where they focus on this area of practice and are up to date with the latest travel health information.  We will send your doctor a letter regarding your appointment for their records and continuity of care.

I received a prescription for a vaccine or a travel-related medication from outside your clinic.  Can you give me the vaccination and fill my prescription? 

Absolutely!  We typically have a good supply of vaccines and travel related prescriptions (such as anti-malaria medicines) in stock.  We prefer you call ahead to book an appointment to ensure when you arrive our pharmacists and nurses are available.  We will see walk in vaccine and prescription patients but we place first priority to our booked appointments.  Please note that there is a $20 injection fee per patient for travel vaccinations if you did not receive a travel consultation through our clinic.

If I do a travel health consultation with you, can I take my prescriptions to be filled at my regular pharmacy?

Where you get your prescriptions filled is up to you.  In addition to being a travel clinic, we are a licensed pharmacy.  We are able to provide you with your vaccines and prescriptions medications immediately after your consultation.  Our pharmacy has extensive stock of travel-related medications and we are a certified Yellow Fever Vaccination Centre.

We feel that we provide a convenient option to handle all of your travel health needs in one visit.  But if you prefer, our travel health consultants can provide you with a prescription to take to your regular pharmacy.

Where are you located? 

Our address is 404-191 Edwards Way SW in Airdrie.  We are located in the Station Crossing Centre strip mall, which is located immediately west of the railroad tracks off First Avenue.  Click here to find us on Google Maps. 

When are you open? 

Click here for our hours of operation. 

How do I book an appointment? 

You can call us at 403-980-TRIP (8747) or fill in our online appointment request form here.

Our group is going on a trip.  Can you do a group appointment? 

We are able to do group appointments.  Check out our group appointment page here.

How much will an appointment and vaccines cost?

Our fees page is located here.

Our company sends staff members overseas.  Can we set up a corporate account with you?

Definitely!  Check out our corporate page here.

What are the methods of payment?

We accept Visa, MasterCard, Debit and Cash. We are able to directly bill some drug plans as well.  Bring your drug benefits card to your appointment.