Recent Zika virus diagnosis in Alberta highlights need for pre-travel health consults


Canada’s first reported case of Zika virus shows the importance of seeking travel health advice prior to and after an overseas trip.

CTV News reported yesterday that an Albertan visiting Thailand on a holiday in January became ill upon their return and was diagnosed with this rare disease which is transmitted by mosquitoes.  Fortunately, the patient has recovered from the infection.

“This case highlights the importance of seeing a travel health professional before travelling overseas,” noted Jason Kmet, travel health consultant and pharmacist at Polaris Travel Clinic and Pharmacy in Airdrie.  “While we don’t have a vaccine for Zika virus, part of the pre-travel consultation includes information and education on mosquito bite prevention, and what do to if you feel sick in the days and weeks after you return to Canada.”

At a pre-travel consultation, a traveller’s health risk is evaluated based on their destination, type of accommodations, duration and time of year of travel, and planned activities on the trip.  Their medical history and current health status is factored into the travel plan as well.  Based on this information, travellers receive personalized education and recommendations designed to keep them safe and healthy while away.

Polaris Travel Clinic and Pharmacy is a one stop travel health destination.  Polaris provides pre-travel consultations, administers vaccines, write and fill travel-related prescriptions and carries travel-related over the counter medications.  They also stock travel health specialty items such as mosquito bed nets and water purification tablets.

Polaris Travel Clinic and Pharmacy has been certified by the Public Health Agency of Canada as a Yellow Fever Vaccination Centre.

For further information, please contact (403)980-8747 or visit  For media inquiries, please contact Jason Kmet at (403)980-8747.

Polaris Travel Clinic and Pharmacy
404-191 Edwards Way SW
Airdrie, AB
T4B 3E2
Phone: 403-980-TRIP (8747)
Fax: 403-980-9042