WHO releases report on Darfur yellow fever outbreak

The World Health Organization and the government of Sudan released a situation report last week as an update on the outbreak of yellow fever in Sudan's Darfur region.

Thirty-five localities are experiencing the outbreak in East, North, West, South and Central Darfur. As of January 6, the total number of suspected cases hit 849, including 171 deaths. The case fatality rate is 20.1 percent.

The WHO recently concluded Phase II of its yellow fever vaccination campaign, vaccinating approximately 1.1 million population or 93 percent of the targeted population in Central, West and South Darfur.

As part of an emergency response plan, the WHO recommended that the third phase of the vaccination campaign include approximately two million people living in Um Dukhun, Rokiro, Eldaen, Shaeriya, Elwihda, Edd Elfursan and Kabkabiya.

The first vaccine shipment of 670,400 doses for the third phase was expected to arrive on Thursday. The second shipment of 702,000 doses and the third shipment of 827,600 doses will be delivered shortly afterwards.

The WHO conducted a national yellow fever risk assessment on December 29 to further assess epidemic risks in other parts of Sudan. A virologist from Institute Pasteur in Dakar, Senegal, took 1,754 blood samples from eight sites of Sudan's four ecological zones. The analysis has yet to be completed.