Do I Need A Passport to Fly?

REAL ID at Airports

Planning a family vacation to California? Maybe you have a business trip to Chicago? You may need a passport before going to the airport if you live in one of nearly two dozen states who have yet to institute REAL ID for identification.

The REAL ID Act was enacted in 2005 and has been slowly phased in over the last decade. Most of the changes do not affect the average person, but, in 2016, REAL ID or similar federally issued identification, such as a passport, will be required for all air travelers.

Many states have already instituted REAL ID, but four states (New York, New Hampshire, Minnesota and Louisiana) have yet to move ahead with REAL ID legislation, and nearly half of all states are either currently working toward it or have stated they will not participate. As soon as Jan. 1, 2016, millions of people living in these states may be unable to fly without a passport as state IDs that do not meet the new guidelines will not suffice.

Due to the nature of the REAL ID legislation, we don’t know the exact date it will go into effect other than sometime after Jan. 1, 2016, but there will be a three-month grace period to help individuals who do not yet have the required identification.

“Rushes on passports will likely result in delays in getting applications processed,” said Andrew Meehan, policy director of advocacy group Keeping Identities Safe in a CNBC interview. “Airports in non-compliant states will likely see long lines as travelers unaware of the changes will be turned away.”

This could become a serious issue for even the most casual traveler as the normal government processing time of four to six weeks to process a passport could take exponentially longer. Many experts are recommending that those who live in affected states, as well as anyone planning to travel internationally, obtain their passport before REAL ID goes into effect to ensure they are ready for their trip.

If you need assistance with a passport or would like more information about how to prepare before REAL ID goes into effect, contact Passport Health’s Passport and Visa Services division to learn more.

Dengue in Hawaii: What It Means and How to Prevent It

Dengue in Hawaii

Hawaii has become synonymous with a relaxing island vacation, but an invader is poised to ruin paradise. Since early September, more than 30 cases of dengue fever have been identified on Hawaii’s Big Island. This is the largest dengue outbreak to ever occur in the state, and it is the first locally transmitted outbreak of the virus.

[Read more…]

Uber and Passport Health Delivering Flu Shots Across the Country

Uber flu shots

Uber, flu shots and Passport Health combine once again to bring immunizations to people in 36 cities throughout the United States.

Influenza affects up to 20 percent of people every year and harms individuals, families and the economy at large. But, Uber and Passport Health are teaming up to help you stay FluFree.

Today, Passport Health and Uber will be delivering shots to the following cities:

Northeast: Baltimore; Boston; Hartford, Conn.; Hoboken, N.J.; Jersey City, N.J.; New York; Philadelphia; Providence, R.I..; Washington, Worcester, Mass.

South: Atlanta; Charleston, S.C.; Charlotte, N.C.; Dallas; Houston; Nashville, Tenn.; New Orleans; Orlando; Raleigh/Durham, N.C.; Richmond; Tampa Bay, Fla.

Midwest: Columbus, Ohio; Des Moines, Iowa; Detroit; Grand Rapids, Mich.; Indianapolis; Kansas City, Mo.; Milwaukee; Pittsburgh

West: Boise, Idaho; Los Angeles; Orange County, Calif.; Phoenix; Portland, Ore.; San Francisco, Seattle.

For just $10, individuals that request UberHEALTH through their Uber app will receive:

  • A wellness pack which includes a UberHEALTH water bottle, tissues, hand sanitizer, lollipop and recyclable UberHEALTH tote along with the ability to get a flu shot from a Passport Health nurse.
  • Maximum of one wellness pack & ten free flu shots per request.

“Flu shots are often our best line of defense against this nasty bug,” said Vicki Sowards, Director of Nursing Resources for Passport Health. “The Uber-Passport Health partnership is key to raising awareness of the importance of influenza vaccination and help protect even more people against this potentially deadly disease.”

To learn out more about how to participate in this program see Uber’s helpful blog post.

Already received your flu shot from the UberHEALTH program? Share your photos or stories below, on Facebook or via Twitter.

How the 1918 Spanish Flu Pandemic Links to World War I

Fort Riley during 1918 influenza pandemic

Imagine sending your daughter off to school, but she never comes home. That is what happened to Grace Nye, a mother from Toppenish, Washington, in October of 1918. A letter to her from her daughter’s headmaster reads as follows:

“Absolutely everything possible was done in the way of medical care and nursing. The sick was never left alone for one minute, someone was administering to their needs and looking after them and I want you to feel that in this sickness that your daughter has had as good attention as she possibly could have had in any hospital or home.”

[Read more…]