Before start packing for your travel to the Greek capital, it’s good for you to know some information about the health in Athens. Let’s start from the most important: There is not any fear of catching a strange or particular disease in Athens, Greece; therefore no vaccines are required for your travel there.
If you are coming from an infected area you need to have a yellow fever vaccination certificate. However, there are some recommended vaccinations to do before leaving your country (recorded on an international health certificate) such as tetanus & diphtheria, polio and hepatitis A & B.
Before your trip
You have to know that codeine, which is usually, found in headache medicine, is banned in Greece, so check the medication you’re taking with you carefully if you want to avoid prosecution.
It’s better to obtain a certificate from your doctor for every medication you carry with you into the country because strict regulations are applied to the importation of medicines into Greece.
If you need a particular medication, better take it with you because you might be unable to find it. If you wear glasses have a spare pair and your prescription with you.
Tap Water in Athens
Although the food products you’ll find in Greece are of very high quality, care in what you eat and drink.
In Athens, tap water is drinkable, but in some islands (especially in the Cyclades) you can’t drink it.
Always ask local people to be sure of the water.
If you drink infected water, you may have stomach upsets (most common travel health problem) or diarrhea, but nothing really serious.
The major factor in health problems in Greece is the heat, especially if you are traveling there during the period between June and September.
Please read: Athens Weather
To avoid dehydration, always carry a water bottle with you and force yourself to drink all the time, even if you don’t feel thirsty.
Excessive sweating can lead to loss of salt (characterized by muscle cramps, fatigue, lethargy, and headaches) so think to salt your food or caring salt tablets with you.
Don’t forget to drink plenty of liquids and try to avoid excessive alcohol consummation.
Please read: When is the best time to visit Athens
What to avoid:
Sunburn is another big danger in Greece where the sun is particularly intensive.
Avoid lying under the sun between 1pm and 4pm, always use sunscreen, especially if you have white skin, wear a hat and good-quality sunglasses.
Medical Services and Health Insurance in Athens, Greece
Citizens of EU countries can benefit from free treatment in a public hospital if you present an E111 form (ask your doctor or local hospital).
The European Health Insurance Card (EHIC card) covers you for most medical care but not emergency repatriation or non-emergencies.
Emergency treatment is free for everybody in Greek public hospitals but they are, unfortunately, often overcrowded.
Conditions are much better in private hospitals but they are quite expensive.
A good health-insurance policy is essential.