Yellow fever - Annual Epidemiological Report 2016 [2014 data]

surveillance report
Publication series: Annual Epidemiological Report on Communicable Diseases in Europe
Time period covered: Reporting on 2014 data retrieved from TESSy* on 19 November 2015
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European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control. Annual Epidemiological Report 2016 – Yellow fever. [Internet]. Stockholm: ECDC; 2016

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In 2014, no cases of yellow fever were reported in EU/EEA countries.

Key facts

• In 2014, no cases of yellow fever were reported in EU/EEA countries.

Methods

Click here for a detailed description of the methods used to produce this annual report

  • Data were obtained from 29 EU/EEA countries, with the exception of Liechtenstein and Iceland.
  • 22 countries used the EU case definition, four countries used an alternative case definition, and three countries did not specify the definition they used.
  • Surveillance is compulsory in 27 EU/EEA countries, comprehensive, and mostly passive (active in Belgium, the Czech Republic and Slovakia). Data reporting is case-based and at done the national level (Annex).   

Epidemiology

No cases of yellow fever were reported in EU/EEA countries in 2014.   

Discussion

Yellow fever is endemic in several countries in Africa and South America [1]. According to WHO, there are an estimated 200 000 cases of yellow fever, causing 30 000 deaths, worldwide each year, with 90% occurring in Africa. The yellow fever burden in Africa was estimated for the year 2013 as 130 000 cases with fever and jaundice or haemorrhage (95% CI 51 000–380 000), including 78 000 deaths (95% CI 19 000–180 000) [2].

In 2014, only 21 cases of yellow fever and 12 deaths were reported: the Democratic Republic of Congo reported two outbreaks involving seven cases, Brazil one case, and Peru reported 13 cases, including 12 deaths [3]. In 2013, 230 cases of yellow fever (including 85 deaths) were reported to WHO from four African countries (206 cases and 69 deaths, mainly from Ethiopia and Sudan, but also from the Democratic Republic of Congo and Cameroon) and from two countries in South America (23 cases and 15 deaths from Peru and Colombia) [4]. Large immunisation campaigns were carried out in the affected areas [4]. However, the capacity of these countries to implement vaccination campaigns is limited due to a worldwide shortage of vaccine supplies [3].

Public health conclusions

Vaccination is the most important preventive measure against yellow fever. The vaccine is safe, affordable and highly effective, and a single dose of yellow fever vaccine is sufficient to confer sustained immunity and lifelong protection against yellow fever disease. A booster dose of yellow fever vaccine is not needed. The vaccine provides effective immunity within 30 days for 99% of the vaccinated people [1].

References

  1. World Health Organization. Factsheet: yellow fever 2014. Available from: http://www.who.int/mediacentre/factsheets/fs100/en/
  2. Garske T, Van Kerkhove MD, Yactayo S, Ronveaux O, Lewis RF, Staples JE, et al. Yellow fever in Africa: estimating the burden of disease and impact of mass vaccination from outbreak and serological data. PLoS medicine. 2014 May;11(5):e1001638.
  3. Yellow fever in Africa and the Americas, 2014. Wkly Epidemiol Rec. 2015 Jun 26;90(26):323-34.
  4. 4Yellow fever in Africa and South America, 2013. Wkly Epidemiol Rec. 2014 Jul 4;89(27):297-306.

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* The European Surveillance System (TESSy) is a system for the collection, analysis and dissemination of data on communicable diseases. EU Member States and EEA countries contribute to the system by uploading their infectious disease surveillance data at regular intervals.