By NewsDesk  @bactiman63

The World Health Organization (WHO) reported yesterday an update on the yellow fever outbreak in the West Africa nation of Senegal.


Since October, a total of seven confirmed cases of yellow fever have been reported from four health districts in three regions in Senegal– Tambacounda, Kedougou and Matam regions.

At least two deaths have been recorded.

The Senegal Ministry of Health is coordinating a rapid response. Recommended response activities include immunization of the local population, enhanced surveillance, risk communication, community engagement and vector control.

WHO reports the detection of yellow fever cases in the Tambacounda and Kedougou regions demonstrates the possibility of sylvatic spread of yellow fever to unvaccinated people in a rural area and emphasizes the importance of maintaining high population immunity in all countries located in areas at high risk for yellow fever. Recent epidemiological studies have reported that the villages are in a savanna area with non-human primates. Permanent or temporary pools of water are observed at the outskirts of residential areas.

Although mass vaccination took place in Senegal in 2007, the eastern part of the country is considered to be at high risk of endemic yellow fever transmission. Unvaccinated individuals remain vulnerable to infection with yellow fever due to the persistence of the disease in primates (sylvatic cycle), especially in rural areas. The two affected regions are also difficult to reach, making vaccination efforts challenging. Intensive care units in the regions are far from the district (186 km) with poor road conditions. Affected districts are rural, largely consisted of forests, making it difficult to control the vector and mitigate the combined sylvatic-urban cycle.