Guidance

Solomon Islands: migrant health guide

Advice and guidance on the health needs of migrant patients from Solomon Islands for healthcare practitioners.

Main messages

If the patient is new to the UK:

  • explain to them how the NHS works
  • discuss how this compares to the healthcare system they’ve been used to

Ensure that all patients are up-to-date with the UK immunisation schedule.

Screen all new entrants, including children, for tuberculosis (TB).

Consider screening for hepatitis B, particularly among those who have recently arrived. Solomon Islands has a high prevalence.

Ask opportunistically about any travel plans the patient may have to visit friends and relatives in their country of origin, and see National Travel Health Network and Centre (NaTHNaC), or the Health Protection Scotland websites (TRAVAX and fitfortravel), for travel advice.

There is a high risk of malaria in Solomon Islands.

There is a risk of typhoid infection in Solomon Islands.

Infectious diseases

Immunisation

Ensure that all patients, especially children, are up-to-date with the UK immunisation schedule. See Immunisation collection with complete schedules.

Tuberculosis

There is a high incidence of TB in Solomon Islands (40 to 499 cases per 100,000), so:

  • screen all new entrants (including children) for TB according to NICE guidelines
  • refer to TB services promptly if screening is positive
  • maintain long term vigilance for symptoms of TB even if initial screening is negative
  • be aware that TB is a notifiable disease

Sexually transmitted infections and HIV

Take other risk factors into consideration when assessing likely health needs relating to HIV and STIs (no data are available on HIV prevalence in Solomon Islands).

Hepatitis B

Solomon Islands has a high prevalence of hepatitis B, so:

  • consider screening for hepatitis B, particularly those who have recently arrived
  • offer screening for hepatitis B to all pregnant women during each pregnancy
  • immunise appropriately babies born to mothers who are hepatitis B positive, and follow-up accordingly
  • be aware that the UK has a selective immunisation programme for hepatitis B

Hepatitis C

Solomon Islands has a higher prevalence of hepatitis C than the UK, so consider screening for hepatitis C if other risk factors apply.

Travel plans and advice

Ask opportunistically about any travel plans the patient may have to visit friends and relatives in their country of origin, and see National Travel Health Network and Centre (NaTHNaC), or the Health Protection Scotland websites (TRAVAX and fitfortravel), for travel advice.

Malaria

There is a high risk of malaria in Solomon Islands, mainly due to P. falciparum and P. vivax., so:

Typhoid

There is a risk of typhoid infection in Solomon Islands, so:

  • ensure that travellers to Solomon Islands are offered typhoid immunisation and advice on prevention of enteric fever
  • remember enteric fever in the differential diagnosis of illness in patients with a recent history of travel to-or-from Solomon Islands

Helminths

There is a risk of helminth infections in Solomon Islands, including soil transmitted helminthiasis.

Women’s health

Reproductive health indicators

Reproductive health indicator UK Solomon Islands
Number of children per woman¹ 2 4

¹lifetime average

No data are available on:

  • contraceptive use
  • mammography screening rates
  • cervical cancer screening rates

Nutritional and metabolic concerns

Anaemia

There is a moderate risk of anaemia in adults (estimated prevalence in non-pregnant women is 20 to 40%) and a high risk in pre-school children (estimated prevalence is >40%), so:

  • be alert to the possibility of anaemia in recently arrived migrants, particularly women and pre-school children
  • test as clinically indicated

Vitamin D

Consider the possibility of vitamin D deficiency in people who may be at risk due to:

  • covering their body for cultural or religious reasons (lack of sunlight)
  • skin colour
  • diet (vegan or vegetarian)

Vitamin A

There is a risk of vitamin A deficiency in Solomon Islands.

Country profile

Health indicators and health care

WHO Global Health Observatory has a summary of health indicators and health care in Solomon Islands.

Culture, politics and history

BBC News and The World Factbook provide background information on the culture, politics and history of Solomon Islands.

Languages

The main languages used in Solomon Islands are:

  • Melanesian pidgin (in much of the country is lingua franca)
  • English (official but spoken by only 1%-2% of the population)
  • 120 indigenous languages

Source: The World Factbook.

Religions

Religion Population (%)
Protestant 73.4
Roman Catholic 19.6
Other Christian 2.9
Other 4
None 0.03
Unspecified 0.1

¹Church of Melanesia 31.9%, South Sea Evangelical 17.1%, Seventh Day Adventist 11.7%, United Church 10.1%, Christian Fellowship Church 2.5%

Source: The World Factbook.

Migration to the UK

There were over 300 people from Solomon Islands living in England and Wales at the time of the 2011 Census.

Source: Office for National Statistics.

Published 31 July 2014