International Certificate of Vaccination or Prophylaxis

When you go on a volunteer trip abroad, we recommend that you carry the International Certificate of Vaccination or Prophylaxis Card (ICVP).

This document serves as a record of all major vaccinations you’ve had such as Tetanus, Hepatitis, Rabies, Typhoid, and tuberculosis.

Carrying an ICVP card is little like carrying a (very) abridged version of your medical records – specifically for vaccinations.

But really, the ICVP card’s most essential purpose is to show proof that you have received a Yellow Fever vaccination within the past 10 years.

When you need a Yellow Fever shot

There are a number of countries that will not allow entry without proof of Yellow Fever vaccination. One of those happens to be Ghana, one of our most popular host countries.

Also, there are countries that require proof of vaccination against Yellow Fever for all incoming passengers who have recently visited a country where Yellow fever is prevalent – even if only for transit.

For example, if you are from Australia and volunteer in Ghana, then Australian Immigration will require you to show proof of Yellow Fever vaccination.

If you already have an ICVP card

We recommend that you take the ICVP card with you on all international trips — even if you will not be visiting a country that requires you to show the ICVP. Why? In case you need medical treatment abroad and your doctor needs proof of your vaccination history.

If you do not have a ICVP

Obtaining an ICVP is as easy as asking for it when getting a relevant vaccination.

For Yellow Fever vaccinations, you will be given one automatically. The relevant area on the card should be stamped AND signed by the person certifying that you’ve been vaccinated.

For most other vaccinations you will normally not be given one unless you ask for it, and they will normally not be stamped or even signed.