Yellow Fever is an acute viral hemorrhagic disease transmitted through infected mosquitoes. It was named yellow as it, sometimes, cause jaundice (yellow skin and eyes) to the infected people. Thirty-four African countries are endemic to yellow fever.
The incubation period for the virus is 3 to 6 days. Most people don’t experience symptoms. The symptoms are fever, muscle pain, backache, headache, loss of appetite, nausea, and/or vomiting. Within 24 hours, some patients might experience more severe symptoms. This is the toxic phase; high fever is experienced; Liver and kidney are affected; dark urine and abdominal pain and bleeding occur from the mouth, nose, eyes or stomach. Fifty percent of patients in this phase die within days (7-10).
There is no specific antiviral drug for yellow fever. Survival rates can be improved by hospital based early supportive treatment. However, there is a single dose effective vaccine for yellow fever that provides life-long protection. Vaccination is recommended for people 9 month or over living or travelling to yellow fever endemic areas. Some countries require the yellow fever proof of vaccination to allow entry (see list below for African countries).
Recent Outbreaks in Africa
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African countries that requires Yellow Fever vaccination certificate
Countries that require vaccination for all travellers older that 9 months or 1 year:
Benin, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameron, Central African Republic, Congo, Côte d’lvoire, DRC, Gabon, Guinea-Bissau, Kenya, Liberia, Rwanda, Sierra Leone, Niger, Togo.
Countries that requires vaccination for travellers from countries with risk of yellow fever transmission or transit for 12 hours in those countries:
Algeria, Botswana, Cabo Verde, Chad, Djibouti, Egypt, Ethiopia, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Lesotho, Libya, Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea, Madagascar, Malawi, Mauritania, Mauritius, Mozambique, Namibia, Nigeria, Papua New Guinea, Seychelles, Somalia, South Africa, Sudan, Swaziland, Tunisia, Uganda, United Republic of Tanzania, Zambia, Zimbabwe.