by Penny Gleave RN, BScN Penny Gleave RN, BScN No Comments

Back from Peru!

“The trip to Peru was a great success…”

John, who recently returned from his trip to Peru, has some great travel tips:


“The trip to Peru was a great success….what an interesting country to visit – so diverse in every way – peoples, geography, climate.  It was wonderful.


 No health problems at all…nary a mosquito bite.  I did suffer from the altitude – shortness of breath and it wasn’t comfortable but not unbearable.  It bothered me most at night as I kept waking up short of breath..  Some of my companions took the medication – others did not.  Some were affected and some were not.


Next time if I go anywhere high altitude I will take the medication in the hopes it would help.


I felt very confident heading to Peru after your excellent advice about all the issues and am looking forward to the next adventure – Tanzania.”


John McRae
Travel Consultant, Expedia Cruiseshipcenters-Commercial Drive, VancouverJM.MachuPicchu.Oct16

This is me at Machu Picchu just starting a jaw dropping descent.

by Penny Gleave RN, BScN Penny Gleave RN, BScN No Comments

Purchasing Medication Overseas

Ivory Coast Market photo: Issouf Sanogo/AFP/Getty Images

Ivory Coast Market photo: Issouf Sanogo/AFP/Getty Images

It has come to our attention more than once this past month that some travellers are planning to purchase their malaria and travellers diarrhea medications overseas.  While this may seem like an excellent way to save some money, you don’t always know what you’re buying.


Counterfeit and substandard drugs are a problem in every region of the world.  According to the World Health Organization, countries of low and middle income, areas of conflict and weak or non-existent health systems are at highest risk for substandard and counterfeit medications and anti-malarial medication and antibiotics are two of the most commonly reported counterfeit medications.   The appearance of the false medication and its packaging can be very difficult to decipher from a legitimate manufacturer.


Substandard medications differ from counterfeit medications.  Substandard medications are manufactured by a licensed manufacturer that does not adhere to manufacturing standards and can contain little or none of the active pharmaceutical ingredient. This false drug does not provide the effect that is intended and could cause serious harm.


Counterfeit medication

Counterfeit medication is made by a manufacturer that is not licensed and created to appear identical to the authentic medication.  These fake ‘medications’ can be made using toxic or substituted ingredients, with the incorrect active ingredient, the incorrect dose of the active ingredient and filler ingredients.  This can also fail to treat or prevent the disease the medication was prescribed for in the first place and can cause serious illness or even death.

To be certain you will have a reliable prescribed or over-the-counter medication:

  • purchase prescriptions and over-the-counter medications in your local licensed pharmacy in Canada before you depart
  • purchase all the medications you will need for your trip, including acetaminophen (Tylenol) and Loperamide (Imodium)
  • ensure you have enough tablets and a few extra for any chronic health concerns (eg. hypertension)

Carry your medications in the original container and in your hand baggage in case your checked baggage is lost or stolen.



Reliable Medications from Canada

Having reliable medications from Canada will provide reassurance.  You will also be able to read and understand the directions, dose, and side effects, and you will save time having the medications on-hand instead of looking for a legitimate pharmacy abroad when you are in need.










by Penny Gleave RN, BScN Penny Gleave RN, BScN No Comments

Tb Drop in Clinic Monday, Sept. 19 at 3-6pm

img_7871We are having a Tb skin test drop-in on

Monday September 19, 3-6 pm!


Simply drop in between 3-6 pm and check in at the front cashier who will notify us of your arrival.

We will also administer vaccines (MMR, Hepatitis B, Tetanus Diphtheria, and Polio) if you need them.  Please bring your required paperwork from your school or employer.   We will book your Tb read appointment when you are in our clinic.

We are conveniently located in East Vancouver inside Pharmasave: 101-2280 East Hastings Street (at Garden Drive)

Download and complete your Client Intake Form before you arrive to speed up the process!

See you on Monday!



by Penny Gleave RN, BScN Penny Gleave RN, BScN No Comments

Understanding Zika Virus

tiger-mosquito-49141_640There has been a lot of information in the media about Zika virus and it can be confusing and worrying.  We thought we’d help clarify some of the important facts about Zika virus in order for you to be informed and prepared with preventative tools to decrease the risk of contracting this virus while you are in a risk area.

What is Zika virus?

Zika virus is spread by mosquitoes and causes a disease that is usually very mild with flu like symptoms and a rash. However, Zika virus can be a serious concern for pregnant women and may cause brain defects in the fetus such as microcephaly (an abnormally small brain and head).

What causes Zika virus infection?

Zika virus is transmitted to people primarily through the bite of an infected Aedes species mosquito, an aggressive daytime biting mosquito. Transmission can also occur through sexual contact and by spread from mother to fetus during pregnancy. More than forty countries have reported cases. Travellers to the Caribbean, Oceania and Central and South America are particularly at risk. Recently a few cases have occurred in Florida.

What are the symptoms?

Zika is usually mild and lasts for 5-7 days. Symptoms may include fever, headache, joint pains, rash, red eyes and muscle aches. Up to 80% of those infected have no symptoms at all. The Zika virus only rarely causes serious illness or death.

How can I prevent Zika virus?

Since there is no vaccine or medication to prevent Zika, mosquito precautions are extremely important. Wear clothing with long sleeves and pants if possible and use mosquito repellents on exposed skin. Repellents should contain 30% DEET or an equivalent product and should be reapplied according to the product label.
Zika can be passed through sex from a person with Zika to his or her partners.  For couples considering getting pregnant, if either partner has been exposed to Zika, they should wait 8 weeks before trying to conceive and should use condoms during that time period. If either partner has had symptoms of Zika, the couple should wait 6 months before trying to conceive. These recommendations could change as further research is done on the transmission and the effects of the Zika virus.  When you return from your trip, we recommended that you speak with a doctor in order to determine the most recent recommendations.

For the latest list of countries and territories with active Zika virus click here.


Before you travel, protect your health.

TravelSafely with TravelSafe Immunization Clinic