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Tick-borne encephalitis in Central and Eastern Europe

Consider vaccinations if you plan to travel in certain regions.


Image 1/1 : Woud in Finland / © pirkkov

Tick-borne encephalitis is a form of meningitis (inflammation of the meninges) transmitted by infected ticks in Central and Eastern Europe. You may want to be vaccinated if you plan a stay in wooded areas in those countries in spring, summer or autumn.


Endemic areas include Germany, Austria, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Slovenia and Croatia. No infections have yet been detected in people who contracted the virus in Belgium. However, 'Belgian' ticks can transmit Lyme disease.

To vaccinate or not

The complete vaccination schedule consists of three injections spread over a longer period. The second injection already guarantees an appropriate level of protection against the virus. Each injection costs € 39 and is not reimbursed. See your doctor or inquire at a travel clinic to find out whether you need to get vaccinated.

Currently the vaccine against tick-borne encephalitis is not available. The ITM expects to be able to vaccinate again later in June.

Other protective measures

Tick-borne encephalitis is transmitted by ticks. Avoid tick bites by wearing long sleeves, long trousers and closed shoes. Insect repellents can also be used.

If you are bitten, you should remove the tick as quickly as possible with special tick tweezers. However, this does not offer full-proof protection against tick-borne encephalitis, because the disease is transmitted at the start of the bite. The quick removal of the tick can prevent Lyme disease. If you experience flu-like symptoms shortly after a bite consult a doctor as soon as possible.

More information about tick-borne encephalitis

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