Northeastern University is committed to promoting the health and safety of our students traveling internationally. Please review the following information pertaining to your health and safety abroad.
We recommend students visit their doctor or a travel clinic before departing on a university sponsored program. Some programs require a physical before you arrive, and it is also an opportunity to obtain necessary prescriptions, discuss travel vaccinations, and any other areas of concern.
Travelers with pre-existing conditions (including food or medication allergies) should:
- Create a wellness plan with their personal doctor(s)
- Identify the appropriate healthcare resources in your destination.
- Carry a doctor’s letter describing the condition and any instructions for emergency care.
- Check your personal health insurance’s coverage abroad
We suggest travelers voluntarily discuss your condition and appropriate emergency procedures with GEO, the on-site program director or advisor, the host institution, trusted roommates, and/or travel companions.
NU members traveling abroad should bring enough medication, prescriptions, and emergency medical supplies with you for the duration of your program. The rules and regulations vary by country regarding the type of medication and amount you can bring. If you are unsure of the medication restrictions for the country you are traveling to, contact Northeastern WorldAware.
- Prescriptions must be carried in their original labeled container,
- Travelers should have a doctor’s note for all medications,
- Medications should be stored in carry-on luggage.
Depending upon the destination and as it may take your stomach time to acclimate to different foods, travelers should take the follow steps to avoid food borne illness:
- Avoid drinking tap water or using ice to cool beverages
- Do not consume raw or undercooked meats and fish
- Avoid raw fruits or vegetables
- Street-side vendors should be avoided.
If you do become ill, contact WorldAware to locate a medical clinic or hospital.
Access to medical services and quality of care vary by country. We recommend bringing basic first aid supplies and medication for minor ailments. Some helpful items to bring with you include:
- Antiseptic cream,
- Pain reliever/fever reducer,
- Anti-diarrhea and constipation medicine,
- Cold and allergy medicine.
If traveling to a remote location or developing nation, a more extensive kit may be needed. Visit the Centers for Disease Control’s website for more information. We advise against sharing medication, and if you need to purchase medication while at your destination, you should be aware that the active ingredients may vary or may be counterfeit in some locations.
It is always a good idea to review your vaccination history with a travel clinic prior to departure. There may also be other vaccinations recommended by the CDC and the U.S. Department of State, or required by your host country for entrance. For more information, you can also can contact your local county health department.
There are multiple travel clinics located in the Boston area. For example, there is a Travel Medicine & Immunization Clinic at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center that specializes in pre-travel counseling and immunization. (Note: this is not an endorsement of their services but is for informational purposes only) Appointments should be scheduled for at least one month before traveling abroad, and you should first contact your insurance company to find out if these services will be covered.If you are not in the Boston area, check with your local hospital or doctor’s office to find the nearest travel clinic.
Northeastern University takes the safety of its students, both on campus and abroad, very seriously. We want you to be prepared for any emergencies or situations that could put you at risk.
- Discuss safety scenarios with your family. Develop emergency contact procedures.
- Research health and safety information for the country you will be living in and any country you may be visiting. More information can be found at the U.S. State Department website.
- U.S. citizens are encouraged to register with the U.S. Department of State via https://step.state.gov/
- Travel registration is a free service provided by the U.S. Government to U.S. citizens who are traveling to, or living in, a foreign country.
- Registration allows you to record information about your upcoming trip abroad that the Department of State can use to assist you in case of an emergency.
- Americans residing abroad can also get routine information from the nearest U.S. embassy or consulate.
- Students are required to register their itinerary in “My Travel Plan” in the MyNEU portal
- Leave your family with copies of your passport, visa, travel arrangements, and airline tickets. Take a copy for yourself and keep them in a safe place.
- Keep emergency numbers with you. Know the numbers of Study Abroad Coordinators at NU and your host school, the nearest U.S. embassy or consulate, and your health insurance company.
- When you are traveling independently from a school-sponsored trip, notify a school administrator and at least one friend on your program of where you will be going and when you expect to return. If you enter a new country, register with the U.S. consulate or embassy and the university’s travel registry system.
An emergency situation is any circumstance that poses a genuine risk to the safety and well-being of program participants. Emergencies can include but are not limited to:
- Disappearance or kidnapping
- Criminal assaults
- Sexual assault or rape
- Serious illness
- Physical or emotional injury, or death
- Hospitalization for any reason
- Arrest, incarceration, or deportation
- Terrorist threat
In emergency situations, please follow the below protocol:
1.Contact the appropriate local emergency response services. If you are unsure of their ability to assist, skip to step #2 of the protocol to obtain assistance from your local resources.
2. Contact your host Study Abroad Program Coordinator. Upon arrival in your host country, you will have an orientation where the emergency protocol will be reviewed, and emergency contact information will be provided to you. Always contact your in-country contact first, as they are the ones who will be able to provide immediate assistance
3. If on co-op, contact your employer/supervisor.
4. Contact WorldAware to alert them to the situation and to access services that they have available. WorldAware will notify the Northeastern University Police Department and GEO of the issue.
5. U.S. Embassies and Consulates
- U.S. Embassies and Consulates are your advocates while you are abroad and provide useful assistance in emergencies. GEO advises you to register at the Consular section of the nearest U.S. Embassy or Consulate. This will make it easier if someone at home needs to locate you urgently or if you need to be evacuated in the unlikely event of an emergency. This is especially true if you are traveling independently, not on a school-sponsored trip. If your passport is lost or stolen, you will need to report this to the nearest embassy. If you are already registered with them, it will make the process a little bit smoother. Should you become ill or injured, the Embassy or Consulate can in many cases supply you with a list of local physicians and medical facilities.
- If you find yourself in legal difficulty, contact WorldAware immediately. They cannot serve as your legal counsel, but they can provide you resources to move forward.
- If you get arrested, ask that your home country’s consular officials be notified.
NU maintains a comprehensive program to respond to costs associated with accidents and emergency or urgent illnesses that arise during and in the course of an international program. Please be advised that this is not health insurance. The university program also provides repatriation and emergency evacuation for circumstances that arise during and in the course of an international program. Students will see this $100 fee appear on their NU Student Account, billed several weeks prior to departure.
For more information on insurance and overseas coverage, please visit the International Travel Insurance web page.
All Northeastern University students, faculty, and administrators requiring medical, security, and travel assistance abroad can obtain assistance through WorldAware’s 24/7 response operation center (ROC). Please contact WorldAware at firstname.lastname@example.org or +1.312.470.3108 (international collect calls are accepted). Please use the phone number for urgent situations, as email responses may be delayed.
All students are required to have their own health insurance when participating in an international program. Students are urged to contact their health insurance provider in advance of departure to better understand how their particular insurance plan responds overseas. Many insurance plans (including NUSHP) provide coverage on a reimbursement basis meaning that the traveler pays out of pocket then files a claim for reimbursement with the insurance company upon return. Students should be prepared to pay for their medical care while overseas including deductibles on their respective health insurance plans.
The NUPD International Safety Office (ISO) assists NU travelers prior to international travel by providing guidance, logistics assistance, and information in order to enhance traveler safety and security awareness. The ISO also monitors global events, assesses the potential impact to NU travelers, communicates with the NU community, and responds to international emergencies. Travelers can obtain assistance by calling WorldAware at +1.312.470.3108 or the NUPD 24/7 dispatch center at +1.617.373.3333 (emergency) or 2121 (non-emergency).
The office provides one-on-one travel consultation for the NU community traveling abroad, especially those traveling to high risk destinations. The university suggests members of the NU community consult with ISO about health, safety, and security concerns prior to their departure. The ISO can review itineraries, create custom maps, identify key services in your destination, and develop emergency and communication plans. For more information contact: email@example.com or visit http://www.northeastern.edu/international-travel/be-prepared/
The Office for Gender Equity and Compliance addresses issues surrounding Title IX prohibited offenses, such as sexual harassment, sexual assault, stalking, intimate partner violence, domestic violence, and gender-based. Contact OGEC during Boston Campus business hours at +1.617.373.4644. Questions, concerns, or complaints can also be submitted online or via email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
For more information, visit the Office for Gender and Equity Compliance website.