A ProMED-mail post
Archive Number: 20121203.1436409
Date: Mon 3 Dec 2012
Source: Reuters [edited]
Yellow fever has killed 164 people over the last 3 months in Sudan’s Darfur, the World Health Organization (WHO) said on Monday [3 Dec 2012], an arid region the size of Spain where fighting and banditry makes access particularly difficult.
Healthcare is provided almost entirely by aid agencies in parts of Darfur, where rebels took up arms in 2003 complaining of neglect by the central government hundreds of miles away in Khartoum.
The latest outbreak of mosquito-borne yellow fever [virus] has been concentrated in central Darfur, the WHO and Sudan’s health ministry said in a joint statement. “Between 2 Sep-29 Nov , the total number of suspected yellow fever cases has reached 677, including 164 deaths,” the statement said.
Nearly half the yellow fever cases were in people between the ages of 15-30, it said, and about a quarter were children aged 5-15.
There is no effective treatment for the hemorrhagic fever, but there is a vaccine. The WHO said last month [November 2012] that some 3.6 million people would be vaccinated in affected areas of Darfur.
Monday’s [3 Dec 2012] statement said more than half of the targeted population had been vaccinated by 30 Nov 2012.