Security and health

The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) provides advice for business travellers and tourists going to Azerbaijan. This is regularly updated, and should be checked before planning travel.

It is strongly recommended that Australian travellers take out comprehensive travel insurance that will cover any overseas medical costs, before their departure. They should confirm that their insurance covers them for the whole time they will be away and check what circumstances and activities are / are not included in their policy.

It is also recommended that Australian travellers register your travel and contact details, before travelling, on the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade website, to provide greater protection in case of an emergency.

Health

Private medical clinics with facilities comparable to those in Western countries operate in Baku. However, in other areas of Azerbaijan medical and government facilities in general, are often inadequate. Shortages of basic medical supplies are common.

Doctors and hospitals will usually require up-front payment before commencing treatment. In the event of a serious illness or accident, medical evacuation (costs must be considered) to a destination with appropriate facilities may be necessary.

Malaria is a risk in the southern lowland areas, especially in summer and it is recommended to take prophylaxis and use using insect repellent at all times.

Water-borne, food-borne and other infectious diseases including; typhoid, hepatitis, tuberculosis, brucellosis and rabies, as well as HIV/AIDS are prevalent.

Boil all drinking water or drink bottled water and avoid ice cubes, unpasteurised dairy products and raw and undercooked food.

The World Health Organization has confirmed human deaths from avian influenza in Azerbaijan. The Department of Health and Ageing advises Australians who reside in Azerbaijan for an extended period to consider, as a precautionary measure, having access to influenza antiviral medicine for treatment. Long-term residents are at a greater risk of exposure to avian influenza over time.

Australians intending to travel to Azerbaijan for shorter periods are at much lower risk of infection but should discuss the risk of avian influenza with their doctor as part of their routine pre-travel health checks.