Travel health nursing is concerned not only for the health of travelers, but also their safety. Road crashes are the single greatest annual cause of death of healthy U.S. citizens traveling abroad. Be sure to review road safety measures for drivers and pedestrians during the pretravel encounter.
CDC recently expanded its recommendations for the use of Hepatitis B vaccine and the US now has four products available for adults. Please look into the April 2022 Vaccine Update content in our new Educational Resource to learn more about these changes and to find some valuable Hep B resources for you and your patients. (see below)

Education Resource

Initiated in January, Educational Resource is a monthly ATHNA educational feature to help travel health nurses keep current. Each topic includes some general information coupled with resources that can be used for more professional learning as well as for patient counseling. In April we featured World Immunization Week with recent updates in the ACIP Immunization Schedule pertinent to travel health. This month we start to address the WHO 20 NTDs- Neglected Tropical Diseases, share some resources for educating travelers about sun risks as the summer travel season kicks in, and introduce some new travel health terminology. Do you know what a familymoon is? Screen tourism? Gramping (not glamping)?

Past content is archived, so if you have not had an opportunity to read previous postings, we encourage you to look through the calendar for topics of interest and value.

Return Monthly for New Content & Remember:

The long- awaited change in the rabies PrEP vaccination schedule is now official!

On May 5, CDC published the new recommendation in the MMWR. This was the final step necessary to make this shortened 2 dose schedule the US standard for pretravel immunization against rabies. We encourage nurses to read the publication in its entirety. Next month ATHNA will start a series of educational offerings to help all nursing professionals understand the threat of rabies, know how to counsel prevention measures, and address FAQs about the new vaccination guidelines. Remember: always educate your patients to avoid direct contact with mammals.

Use of a Modified Preexposure Prophylaxis Vaccination Schedule to Prevent Human Rabies: Recommendations of the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices - United States, 2022

ATHNA Speaks Out Against Gun Violence

As a member of the global public health community, ATHNA supports the May 25 statement of the American Nurses Association (ANA) regarding the need for collective action to stem the rise in gun violence in our country. We also support and refer readers to the American Public Health Association (APHA) web site addressing this leading and tragic cause for premature death across America

Travel health nurses are committed to the health and safety of all travelers domestic and international. ATHNA encourages its members to support local, national, and international efforts to eliminate gun violence.

ANA Announcement:

SILVER SPRING, MD - Yesterday in Uvalde, Texas, at least 19 children and two teachers lost their lives when a gunman entered an elementary school and opened fire. Two weeks ago, grandparents and family members were gunned down while grocery shopping in Buffalo, New York. These are only two of the latest instances of innocent lives lost to senseless gun violence in such a short span of time.

"Our hearts ache tremendously for the loved ones and the communities left behind in the wake of these heinous acts of violence," said American Nurses Association President Ernest J. Grant, PhD, RN, FAAN. "The loss of young lives and the trauma of those who witnessed the carnage and survived will remain with them forever. Their lives will never be the same. There simply are no words. Burying a child is the most unnatural and horrific act that no parent should ever have to experience in their lifetime."

Nurses witness the immediate carnage and devastation from mass shootings and gun violence.

"It's unimaginable and you never recover from it," said Grant. "We extend our hearts and full support to all of the first responders, nurses and health care professionals providing care to victims and loved ones at the hospitals and health systems in affected communities across the country."

For decades, the American Nurses Association (ANA) has advocated for common sense policies that will enhance the background check system to prevent potentially dangerous individuals from obtaining firearms and to improve access to mental health services. In addition to supporting the Bipartisan Background Checks Act of 2019 and 2021 (H.R. 8), ANA has declared gun violence a public health issue and called for research that helps address the underlying issues that may lead to gun violence.

ANA stands in solidarity with the individuals, families and communities impacted and calls for meaningful action now to address this tragic, ever-growing epidemic of gun violence.

Previous ANA Statement:

"The time to unite and take action is now. Together we can halt the growing list of victims. We can stop the madness by forging solutions that address the myriad issues that promote cycles of violence. We must raise our voices to join with members of our communities and at every level of civil society in dialogue and action, to address the underlying issues that result in hate and motivate unspeakable acts of violence."

-Former ANA President Pamela Cipriano, PhD, RN, NEA-BC, FAAN

As the largest single group of health care professionals, nurses are increasingly caring for those victimized by gun violence and those forced to confront the physical and emotional consequences of these senseless acts. For decades, ANA has called on Congress to enact sensible legislation aimed at reducing gun violence. In the wake of multiple mass shootings that have taken place across the country, ANA, representing the voices of more than 4.2 million registered nurses nationwide, renewed its call to action by urging lawmakers to immediately repeal restrictions prohibiting the CDC from studying gun violence.

May 30, 2022

Recent Message from ATHNA President, Sandy Weinberg, in Honor of National Nurses Week 2022

We are inspired by you, and we recognize the dedication, commitment to patient care, and professionalism that goes into your work every day. As domestic and international travel starts to resume in great numbers, we applaud travel health nurses committed to traveler health and the prevention of global disease and injury. Our work and purpose are more important than ever. We wish you all Happy Nurses Week!

National Nurse's Week begins each year on May 6th and ends on May 12th which was Florence Nightingale's birthday. Florence Nightingale was the founder of modern nursing and is known as "The Lady with the Lamp" because of her nightly rounds caring for soldiers during the Crimean war. We remember the work of this amazing founder who was not only a caring individual, but one who pursued education, mentored fellow nurses, and acted as a pioneer and change agent by stressing hygiene, sanitation, and epidemiology thereby improving patient outcomes and reducing deaths. Recognized for her work with wounded British forces in Turkey, it can be said that Florence Nightingale also embodied the spirit of our specialty, travel health nursing.

The US has 4.3 million nursing professionals. Since the pandemic began in March 2020, nurses have been stretched to the limit and stressed in the workplace due to initial inadequate supply of PPE, massive numbers of patients admitted to hospitals needing critical care, and an ever-increasing nursing shortage as baby boomer nurses retire and not enough nurses enter the field. To make matters worse, there are fewer qualified nursing professors to educate future nurses, thereby exacerbating the shortage.

As a specialty, travel health nurses have felt the Covid impact as they experienced a calamitous decline in travel across the globe. As a result, many in our specialty have moved on to other nursing roles.

This year, on the last day of National Nurses Week, there will be a Million Nurse March on Washington, DC to help spread awareness of the hardships faced by nurses throughout the healthcare system: calling attention to fair wages and safe nurse-patient ratios among other issues. Whether in the nation's capital, or wherever you may find yourself on May 12th, we encourage ATHNA members to advocate for our profession and our patients.


The American Travel Health Nurses Association (ATHNA) is the professional organization for travel health nursing in North America. We are recognized as an official ANA nursing specialty that is dynamic and evolving. With nearly 3000 members across the United States and internationally, ATHNA is committed to professional development, networking, research, and advocacy in travel health nursing.


As travel health nurses we specialize in advancing the well-being of all travelers in all settings who travel both domestically and internationally. We provide care for individuals, families, and groups through all stages of travel including pre-travel preparation, in transit support, and post travel evaluation and management. Travel health nurses practice in a variety of settings that include private travel health clinics, universities, corporations, the military, public health and community clinics. As clinicians, travel health nursing professionals are specially educated and trained to assess traveler health and safety risks and to manage risk reduction strategies that include immunizations, medications, health counseling, and referrals. Travel health nurses also function as researchers, faculty members, consultants to business and governments, entrepreneurs, and nursing leaders in this country and internationally.

Travel health nursing is not to be mistaken for the "travel nurse" who provides temporary traditional nursing care throughout the US where staffing needs are high and supplemental staffing is needed during times of peak capacity.

ATHNA Offers Free Membership.

Travel Health Nursing: Scope and Standards of Practice

Do you prepare individuals and families for international travel?

As international travel returns, nurses will need to be prepared to offer travel health services according to best practices and the latest legal guidelines. An essential resource for delivering comprehensive and quality care is Travel Health Nursing: Scope and Standards of Practice, 2021, a joint publication of the American Travel Health Nurses Association ( and the American Nurses Association.

  • Did you know? Fewer than twenty percent of travelers seek pretravel services at travel health clinics; most travelers seek immunizations, medications, and counseling guidance from their primary care provider.
  • Travel Health Nursing: Scope and Standards of Practice is written not only for nurses in this new specialty, but also for any nursing clinician with patients who travel
  • This text is the legal foundation for the nursing care of US travelers
  • If you provide any travel health services: pre-travel assessment, immunizations, or health counseling (e.g., malaria, zika, traveler's diarrhea, jet lag, altitude illness) you will find this text essential
  • Post travel care is mentioned as well- Recommendations for post-travel triage and evaluation are included
  • To access the Table of Contents, go to:

To purchase your personal copy or multiple copies for your clinical setting:

Support American Travel Health Nurses Association Inc

Support ATHNA's by using our direct link the next time you shop


Courses & Conferences

ATHNA shares this list for information purposes only and does not endorse any of the programs. Nurses will want to contact the conference organizers directly for all details and relevance to their professional educational needs. Members are encouraged to inform us of other programs for posting on this website.


8th Northern European Conference on Travel Medicine (NECTM8), 8-10 June 2022, Rotterdam, The Netherlands The scientific program will concentrate on the most recent developments in the multidisciplinary field of travel medicine inspired by a maritime conference theme. There will be three parallel session tracks, incorporating a dedicated nursing track and a general practice track.

The 20th International Congress for Tropical Medicine and Malaria (ICTMM) postponed in 2020, will be held on October 2022 at the Bangkok International Trade and Exhibition Centre (BITEC), Thailand. The ICTMM is one of the largest tropical medicine conferences in the world, bringing together thousands of researchers, experts, policymakers, stakeholders, and international authorities in the field of tropical medicine and malaria. Date: October 24 - 28, 2022 Place: Bangkok, Thailand. More information at

71st Annual Meeting of the American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene (ASTMH), 30 October - 3 November 2022, Seattle Washington, United States of America.

The Westchester Course Returns- Virtually In response to many requests, Gail Rosselot will offer another two sessions of her course in travel health fundamentals. If you have an interest in a Zoom format course to run this summer, please contact Gail directly at The content is suitable for nurses new to travel health as well as those seeking a refresher after two + years of Covid. There will be an option to earn 12 CNE credits.

Wilderness Medicine Society- multiple CME 2022 and 2023 conferences in Santa Fe and Big Sky. Dates and contact information at


18th Conference of the International Society of Travel Medicine (CISTM18) 21-25 May, 2023, Basel, Switzerland The 18th Conference of the ISTM will be the largest international meeting bringing together physicians, nurses, pharmacists, and public health professionals from academia, government and the private sector who are committed to the promotion of healthy and safe travel. This will be a hybrid conference where participants can attend virtually or in-person. The theme is: "Dawn of a New Era in Travel Medicine."

Support U.S. Certification for Travel Health Nurses

With the 2020 official recognition of travel health nursing by the ANA and now the publication of the foundational text for our specialty, Travel Health Nursing: Scope and Standards of Practice, 1st edition, the ATHNA Board of Directors is ready to achieve its next goal for our profession: the achievement of U.S. certification.

As many of you know, there is currently no professional nursing certification for travel health nursing in the United States. Unlike other specialties- occupational health nursing, oncology nursing, ambulatory nursing and the like- travel health nurses have not established an equivalent national certification. Lacking a U.S. specialty credential, some nurses have undertaken international or interdisciplinary certificates and courses to demonstrate professional achievement. However, none of these are specific to professional nursing, nor do they confirm knowledge of U.S. standards of care. Acceptance of these alternatives by employers and academic institutions is mixed at best.

Now that our specialty has obtained formal recognition in this country, we can proceed to establish a U.S. certification that adheres to the eligibility and renewal criteria consistent with the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC). We can achieve equal standing with other U.S. nursing specialties.

ATHNA envisions a certification process that will feature a professional portfolio rather than an examination and we have already initiated contact with organizations that can help us achieve this goal in 2022.

But we need your financial support! As you know, during this pandemic crisis, ATHNA has waived all membership dues. We know how Covid-19 has affected so many of you. However, the process for creating a legally recognized professional certification has a cost.

Please consider making a donation today to ATHNA's Certification Fund. As a 501(c) (3) organization, your donation is tax deductible to the extent allowed by law. No amount is too little. And every donation will help us towards this important, final professional goal.

Recognition Standards Certification
2020 2021 2022

Thank you!

ATHNA is tax-exempt under Section 501(c) (3) of the US Internal Revenue Service and is registered with the NY State Charities Bureau.

ATHNA Crossword Returns

Over the years, ATHNA has periodically offered a crossword for our members. With the soaring popularity of Wordle and the spinoff Worldle ( we thought it the right time to start publishing our puzzles again. This crossword features general travel health terminology- some of it quite new. Vocabulary in our field is always changing. See if you know these terms. It can be challenging. Good Luck!

To access the puzzle, go to:

Book Review: Do You Provide Health Services to College Students?

Not sure how to prepare study abroad students? Wondering about resources for students with anxiety or eating disorders? Looking for new ways to fund student health services?

Whether you practice within a college health service or care for college students in another setting, the newly published Principles and Practice of College Health is a worthwhile guide for delivering comprehensive quality health services to this population. Just released by Springer, this important text is edited by John A. Vaughn, M.D., Director of Student Health at Duke University since 2013 and Anthony J. Viera, M.D., Chair of the Department of Family Medicine and Community Health at Duke.

A Seismic Shift in US Travel Health Nursing: The Achievement of Specialty Recognition and its Implications

Richards JA, Rosselot GA
J Travel Med, Volume 28, Issue 1, 2021, taaa202

Past Presidents Julie Richards and Gail Rosselot recently published an article in the Journal of Travel Medicine about the implications of ANA specialty recognition for Travel Health Nursing here in the US. The Perspectives piece is timed to coincide with the soon to be published Travel Health Nursing: Scope and Standards of Practice. According to Julie, "We believe specialty recognition will go a long way to recognize travel health nursing professionalism and promote quality care for travelers and the communities they impact. We hope travel health professionals in all 50 states can benefit." The article details the process for specialty recognition and its benefits, including the opportunity now to establish a U.S. certification for travel health nurses comparable to other U.S. nursing certifications.

ATHNA will feature an article on this website introducing the new Scope & Standards when they become available early in 2021.

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