At least 8 weeks before your trip, check the latest country-specific health advice from the National Travel Health Network and Centre (NaTHNaC) on the TravelHealthPro website. Each country-specific page has information on vaccine recommendations, any current health risks or outbreaks, and factsheets with information on staying healthy abroad. Guidance is also available from NHS (Scotland) on the FitForTravel website.
General information on travel vaccinations and a travel health checklist is available on the NHS website. You may then wish to contact your health adviser or pharmacy for advice on other preventive measures and managing any pre-existing medical conditions while you’re abroad.
The legal status and regulation of some medicines prescribed or purchased in the UK can be different in other countries. If you’re travelling with prescription or over-the-counter medicine, read this guidance from NaTHNaC on best practice when travelling with medicines. For further information on the legal status of a specific medicine, you’ll need to contact the embassy, high commission or consulate of the country or territory you’re travelling to.
Dengue fever is common on Martinique. This is a mosquito-borne virus. Follow the advice from local authorities. If you display symptoms, consult a doctor.
General health care facilities, including emergency services in hospitals, and the availability of doctors, are very good and of an equivalent standard to those found in mainland France. Specialist treatment is also available.
You should get a European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) before leaving the UK. The EHIC provides emergency health cover for treatment in Martinique by the French state health service for which you will have to pay but you will be able to claim back up to 70% of the costs on your return to the UK. Visitors travelling (or being air lifted) to Martinique from other non-French islands specifically for medical treatment should be aware that such treatment will not necessarily be covered. Make sure you have adequate travel health insurance and accessible funds to cover the cost of any medical treatment abroad and repatriation.
If you are planning a permanent move to Martinique, consult the UK Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) for advice on long-term entitlement as residents to health care provision under the French national system. Enquiries should be made to the DWP Overseas Medical Benefits help-line on 00 44 191 218 1999. Alternatively, information can be obtained direct from the English language service of the Caisse Primaire d’Assurance Maladie (French social security service) on 00 33 8 20 90 42 12 or CLEISS (the Helpdesk in France for international mobility and social security) on 00 33 1 45 26 33 4.
If you need emergency medical assistance during your trip, dial 15 and ask for an ambulance. You should contact your insurance/medical assistance company promptly if you are referred to a medical facility for treatment.