Health & Safety

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Health facilities in Taiwan are adequate for routine and emergency medical treatment.  Physicians are well trained and many have studied in the United States and speak English.  State-of-the-art medical equipment is available at many clinics and hospitals.  Hospitals’ nursing services provide medication dispensing and wound care but generally not the daily patient maintenance functions found in U.S. hospitals.  Taiwan regulations require ambulances to have emergency equipment and supplies and to be staffed by trained medical personnel (dial 119).
You should be up to date on routine vaccinations while traveling to any destination. Some vaccines may also be required for travel.
All travelers
Routine vaccines    
Make sure you are up-to-date on routine vaccines before every trip. These vaccines include measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) vaccine, diphtheria-tetanus-pertussis vaccine, varicella (chickenpox) vaccine, polio vaccine, and your yearly flu
Most travelers
Hepatitis A    
CDC recommends this vaccine because you can get hepatitis A through contaminated food or water in Taiwan, regardless of where you are eating or staying.
Some travelers
Ask your doctor what vaccines and medicines you need based on where you are going, how long you are staying, what you will be doing, and information for your specific country of origin.
Hepatitis B    
You can get hepatitis B through sexual contact, contaminated needles, and blood products, so CDC recommends this vaccine if you might have sex with a new partner, get a tattoo or piercing, or have any medical procedures.
Japanese Encephalitis    
You may need this vaccine if your trip will last more than a month, depending on where you are going in Taiwan and what time of year you are traveling. You should also consider this vaccine if you plan to visit rural areas in Taiwan or will be spending a lot of time outdoors, even for trips shorter than a month. Your doctor can help you decide if this vaccine is right for you based on your travel plans. See more in-depth information on Japanese encephalitis in Taiwan.
Although rabies can be found in bats and other mammals in Taiwan, it is rarely found in dogs and is not a major risk to most travelers. CDC recommends rabies vaccine for only these groups:
  • Travelers involved in outdoor and other activities in remote areas that put them at risk for bat bites or other animal bites (such as adventure travel and caving).
  • People who will be working with or around animals (such as wildlife professionals and researchers).


Taiwan is a modern democracy with vibrant public participation.  Political demonstrations are common, especially around election time.  Since Taiwan democratized in the early 1990s, there have been few cases of political violence.  But even demonstrations intended to be peaceful can turn confrontational.  You should avoid protests if possible and exercise caution in the vicinity of any political demonstrations.  The American Citizens Services Unit of the American Institute in Taiwan (AIT) will post notices regarding demonstrations in Taiwan on the AIT website whenever it receives reliable information about them.  In most cases, AIT will not send out an Emergency or Security Message when it has information on a planned demonstration. 
Although the overall violent-crime rate in Taiwan is low, you should avoid high crime areas, namely areas where massage parlors, barbershops, and nightclubs operate as covers for prostitution, and are often run by criminals.  These illicit establishments generally do not advertise, and casual passersby cannot view their interiors.  Several U.S. citizens have been assaulted in these establishments and in the areas near bar and nightclub districts.  In contrast to these illegal operations, ordinary barbershops and other legitimate businesses prominently advertise their services, and you can see the interiors through storefront windows.  Taiwan’s public buses and subway are generally considered safe, but passengers—particularly women--in taxis should exercise caution when traveling alone late at night.  In several parts of Taiwan, incidents of purse snatching by thieves on motorcycles have been reported.  You should keep a photocopy of your passport, other identification, and credit cards in a safe place.
Don't buy counterfeit and pirated goods, even if they are widely available. Not only are the bootlegs illegal in many countries, but you may also be breaking local law.

Important Numbers

Ambulance and Fire Emergency Telephone:  119 (24-hour service)
Police Emergency Telephone:  110
Domestic Violence or Sexual Assault Emergency Telephone:  113 (Taipei Center for the Prevention of Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault)
A 24-hour telephone number for general information:  0800-024-111.  English speaking operators are available on all lines.  If calling from outside Taiwan, dial 886-800-024-111.