Health, Insurance, & Emergencies

Worrying about health risks, insurance, and emergencies is probably not your top priority, but it is very important to take necessary precautions so that you know how to react if confronted with an emergency situation, illness, etc while abroad.

International Traveler's Health Insurance:
You definitely want to ensure that you are covered by insurance while traveling abroad. Just like when you are here in the U.S., you never know what may happen! Solitary or supplemental insurance policy including criteria such as medical evacuation not covered by many policies.

Immunizations, Vaccinations, Shots, and Medicines:
Find out if it is required or recommended to get any immunizations, vaccinations, shots, or medicines.

The UNK Health Center is also prepared to advise students about medical recommendations prior to international travel.

Find out if your prescriptions are acceptable, or if they are considered illegal narcotics in the country your destination country. Get a letter from your doctor listing your medications as well as an explanation of why you need them.

Overall Health:
Investigate your destination country. Check out the UNK Library, surf the web, or read some travel guides so that you can become aware of recommendations and risks.

Contact your doctor or the UNK Health Center to discuss your travel and schedule a physical well in advance of your departure.

Be Prepared! You are going to be trying new foods and living in a culture you may not be accustomed to. Your body will take some time to adjust. Know what signs to look for so that you can seek attention or choose an alternative.

U.S. Department of State Travel Website also has resources pertaining to Mental Health and Disabilities.


Become knowledgeable about how to react and prepare for emergency situations. Even though you will abroad having the experience of a lifetime it is important to know how to respond if you become the victim of a crime, are involved in a natural disaster, or experience another type of emergency.

Know how to contact the U.S. embassy/consulate in your host country. It is suggested that you understand what their role is. You can contact the local embassy in your host country to address questions about health risks and emergency procedures.

Consider enrolling in STEP. The Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) is a free service provided by the U.S. Government to U.S. citizens who are traveling to, or living in, a foreign country. STEP allows you to enter information about your upcoming trip abroad so that the Department of State can better assist you in an emergency. STEP also allows Americans residing abroad to get routine information from the nearest embassy or consulate.