Mapping health and security risks: new interactive tool launches

The International SOS and Control Risks alliance has unveiled a new online service that highlights both key health and security risks to travellers by country.

Travel risk map
The Travel Risk Map, which the international medical and travel security company says is the first of its kind, enables users to differentiate both between medical and security risk, and between specific regions in countries.Scroll down the page to try the interactive version.Dr Irene Lai, medical director of information and analysis for International SOS, said, “We created the Travel Risk Map to help travellers align their pre-trip preparations proportionately with the risks they may encounter in a particular location.“Even in countries with a low medical risk rating and state of the art medical services, travellers may still need assistance with language or navigating an unfamiliar health care system – both of which can be significant barriers to obtaining care.”Launching the service at a time of heightened awareness of traveller security and health issues, and underlining the importance of understanding the issues in specific contexts, International SOS referred to the Ipsos traveller attitudes survey, International Travel: Risks and Reality.The research, canvassing the views of 10,726 people in 13 countries and published in October 2015, found that nine out of ten senior executives “had felt threatened on a work trip.” A further seven in ten had experienced a medical problem, with 16 per cent reporting being sexually harassed.Rob Walker, head of information and analysis at International SOS and Control Risks, summarised the rationale for the interactive dual health and security risk mapping tool, saying, “Our comprehensive overview reveals that in 75 per cent of countries the medical risk is assessed to be at a different level from the travel security risk.“This range within individual countries highlights the complexities organisations face when preparing staff to travel abroad.“Organisations are encouraged to review both medical and security issues when preparing their employees for travel and assignment abroad.“The reality is there are risks everywhere in the world. Understanding what those risks are, and then taking appropriate precautions is the best way to support your staff, enable business growth and deliver on duty of care.”
  • Keep up with the latest employee wellbeing news and features, and read more comment and insight from Rob Walker on traveller safety, in Re:locate’s global health and wellness pages.