Friday, January 28, 2011

Tanzania Sets Up Yellow Fever Vaccine Checks at Border Crossings with Uganda

As the outbreak of yellow fever in Uganda continues to spread, officials in East Africa concluded a meeting discussing disease prevention strategies in the region. Over 190 cases of yellow fever have been reported in Uganda so far with 48 confirmed deaths. The Tanzanian Health Minister has ordered border officials to require proof of yellow fever vaccination before allowing individuals to cross the border. Similar measures have been implemented in major airports throughout the country. In addition to screening for prior vaccination, public health officials are administering the vaccination at these locations.

So far there have been no reports of yellow fever in Tanzania, but public health officials were not ruling out the possibility, either because of individuals who crossed the border before the increased measures were implemented. In addition, the vaccine may take up to 10 days to confer immunity to yellow fever, so it is possible that even individuals who receive the vaccine at the border could bring the disease into the country.


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