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Health & Safety

Northeastern University is committed to promoting the health and safety of our students traveling internationally.


Here are some of the broad health considerations to think about before traveling to your destination. We highly recommend that you visit the Northeastern Travel Website Health and Safety web page for more comprehensive requirements and information about traveling abroad as a Northeastern student.

You are required to have your own health insurance when participating in an international program. Please contact your health insurance provider before you travel to understand how your insurance plan responds overseas.

Review your vaccination history with a travel clinic prior to departure. There may be 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 contact your local county health department.

There are multiple travel clinics located in the Boston area. 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.

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 that you 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.

Northeastern 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. To avoid complications while carrying medicines, you should:

  • Carry prescriptions in their original labeled container;
  • Have a doctor’s note for all medications;
  • Store all medications in carry-on luggage.


Know the rules of conduct — cultural, civil, and criminal — before you go.  For a comprehensive list of emergency contact information, please visit the Northeastern Travel Website Emergency Assistance web page.

The NUPD International Safety Office (ISO) provides guidance, logistics assistance, and information to enhance traveler safety and security awareness. The ISO also monitors global events, assesses the potential impact to Northeastern travelers, and responds to international emergencies.

Travelers can obtain assistance by calling:

  • Travel Support Network:  +1.857.214.5332
  • NUPD 24/7 dispatch center: +1.617.373.3333 (emergency) or 2121 (non-emergency)

Northeastern also suggests members that you consult with ISO about health, safety, and security concerns prior to departure.  The ISO can review itineraries, create custom maps, identify key services in your destination, and develop emergency and communication plans.

If you find yourself in legal difficulty, contact Travel Support Network immediately. They cannot serve as your legal counsel, but they can provide you resources to move forward.

If you have an emergency situation while traveling abroad, please follow the below protocol:

  1. Contact the appropriate local emergency response services.
  2.  Contact your host Study Abroad Program Advisor. Always contact your in-country contact first, as they are the ones who will be able to provide immediate assistance. If on co-op, contact your employer/supervisor.
  3. Contact Travel Support 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.

U.S. Embassies and Consulates are your advocates while you are abroad and provide assistance in emergencies. GEO advises you to register at the nearest U.S. Embassy or Consulate at your destination. 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, outside of 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 usually supply you with a list of local physicians and medical facilities.

If you get arrested, ask that your home country’s consular officials be notified.

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