INDIA: Polio Vaccination Certificates Required of Travelers from Seven Countries
Effective February 14, 2014, individuals traveling to India from one of the seven countries in which the WHO has identified outbreaks of polio must obtain an oral polio vaccination at least six weeks prior to their departure for India, regardless of their age or nationality.
Effective February 14, 2014, any individual traveling to India from Afghanistan, Ethiopia, Israel, Kenya, Nigeria, Pakistan or Somalia will be required to obtain an oral polio vaccination at least six weeks prior to their departure for India. The vaccination requirement applies to anyone traveling to India via these seven countries, regardless of age or nationality. The Indian government has not specified how long a stay in one of the listed countries will trigger the vaccination requirement. Additional guidance is expected in the coming weeks.
Travelers must carry an original vaccination certificate when seeking entry and may be asked to produce it at the Indian port of entry. For an initial period, border officials will accept vaccine certificates that were issued less than six weeks prior to departure to India.
A vaccination certificate is required for visa applications at the Indian Embassy in Ethiopia. Indian consular posts in the other six countries do not yet require vaccination certifications, but they are expected to do so in the near future.
Oral polio vaccine certificates are valid for one year. Travelers will need to receive the vaccine again if traveling to India after their certificate expires.
Indian nationals traveling to any of the seven listed countries are also required to obtain a vaccination prior to departure.
Indian officials originally announced that polio vaccine certification would be required beginning January 30, 2014 but later decided to push the deadline to February 14, 2014.
What This Means for Foreign Nationals
Anyone traveling to India via one of the seven listed countries will need to take into account the vaccination requirement when planning travel dates. Because travelers must have obtained the vaccination at least six weeks prior to departure, the new requirement may delay trips to India.
We worked closely with Fragomen Immigration Services India (Pvt.) Limited (“Fragomen-India”) to prepare this alert. It is for informational purposes only. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact the global immigration professional with whom you work or send an email toIndiaQueries_NewPolicy@fragomen.com.