Has the economic crisis led to a new risk profile for international travellers?

S. Roure, O. Pérez-Quílez, X. Vallès, O. Martínez-Cuevas, M. Sabrià, L. Valerio

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3 Citations (Scopus)


© 2015 Elsevier España, S.L.U. y Sociedad Española de Medicina Interna (SEMI). Introduction The economic world crisis has led to the migration of European workers to developing countries with a high incidence of infectious diseases. The objective of this study was to assess whether this context has produced an increase in the risks to international travellers for work reasons (TWR). Methods Observational, retrospective study. The study population included TWR who were attended before travelling at an International Health Unit in the year 2007 (the year before the initiation of the European crisis) and in the year 2012 (when the structural crisis was established). A comparative socioeconomic analysis was performed as well as an analysis of the risk factors present in both groups. Results In 2007 and 2012 a total of 9,197 travellers were attended. Of these, there were 344 TWR (3.4%); 101 TWR (2.8%) in 2007 and 243 TWR (4.5%) in 2012 (p < 0.001). The average age of the travellers was 38.1 years (SD: 10.57). The most common destination was Sub-Saharan Africa, in 164 (47.6%) of the cases. Malaria chemoprophylaxis was prescribed to 152 travellers (44%) and 80 presented comorbidity (23.25%). The TWR from 2012 presented a significantly greater age (p = 0.05), more comorbidity (p = 0.018) and a greater proportion of stays in rural areas (p = 0.0009) for longer time periods (p = 0.001). Conclusions At 5 years from the start of the economic crisis, there was a change in the profile of TWR. Their number has increased significantly, as has the proportion who present risk factors for contracting imported diseases. The International Health Units should adapt to these new circumstances and adopt preventive measures for this population.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)439-445
JournalRevista Clinica Espanola
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2015


  • Economic crisis
  • Imported disease
  • International health
  • International traveller
  • Traveller for work reasons


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