Official advice for New Zealanders living and travelling overseas

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Brazil: Yellow Fever outbreak

Yellow fever is an acute viral disease transmitted by infected mosquitoes.  Infection with the yellow fever virus causes varying degrees of disease, from mild symptoms to severe illness with bleeding and jaundice. About 15% of people infected with yellow fever progress to a severe form of the illness, and half of those will die, as there is no cure for yellow fever.

Beginning in late 2016 Brazil has experienced its most significant outbreak of yellow fever since 2000. This outbreak includes areas of four states (Minas Gerais, Bahia, Espirito Santo, and Sao Paulo) where yellow fever has not spread in decades and which previously have not required vaccination for travellers.

The areas in Brazil where yellow fever vaccine has previously been recommended are provided on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website.

Affected areas
The following areas are now also considered to be at risk, and travellers/residents in these areas should ensure they are vaccinated against yellow fever and avoid mosquito bites:

  • Bahia State: the following municipalities in the south and south-west of the State: Alcobasa; Belmonte; Canavieiras; Caravelas; Ilheus; Itacare; Mucuri; Nova Visosa; Porto Seguro; Prado; Santa Cruz Cabralia; Una; Urusuca; Almadina; Anage; Arataca; Barra do Chosa; Barro Preto; Belo Campo; Buerarema; Caatiba; Camacan; Candido Sales; Coaraci; CondeUba; Cordeiros; Encruzilhada; Eunapolis; Firmino Alves; Floresta Azul; Guaratinga; Ibicarai; Ibicui; Ibirapua; Itabela; Itabuna; Itagimirim; Itaju do Colonia; Itajuipe; Itamaraju; Itambe; Itanhem; Itape; Itapebi; Itapetinga; Itapitanga; Itarantim; Itororo; Jucurusu; Jussari; Lajedao; Macarani; Maiquinique; Mascote; Medeiros Neto; Nova Canaa; Pau Brasil; Piripa; Planalto; Posoes; Potiragua; Ribeirao do Largo; Santa Cruz da Vitoria; Santa Luzia; São Jose da Vitoria; Teixeira de Freitas; Tremedal; Vereda; Vitoria da Conquista; Agua Fria, Acajutiba, Aiquara, Alagoinhas, Amelia Rodrigues, Amargosa, Anguera, Antonio Cardoso, Apora, Apuarema, Aracas, Aracatu, Aramari, Aratuipe, Aurelino Leal, Barra da Estiva, Barra do Rocha, Barrocas, Biritinga, Boa Nova, Boa Vista do Tupim, Bom Jesus da Serra, Breoes, Cabaceiras do Paraguacu, Cachoeira, Caetanos, Cairu, Camacari, Camamu, Candeal, Candeias, Caraibas, Cardeal da Silva, Castro Alves, Catu, Conceicada Feira, Conceicado Almeida, Conceicado Jacuipe, Conde, Contendas do Sincora, Coracade Maria, Cravolandia, Cruz das Almas, Dario Meira, Dias d'Avila, Dom Macedo Costa, Elisio Medrado, Entre Rios, Esplanada, Feira de Santana, Gandu, Gongogi, Governador Mangabeira, Guajeru, Iacu, Ibirapitanga, Ibirataia, Igrapiuna, Iguai, Inhambupe, Ipecaeta, Ipiau, Ipira, Irajuba, Iramaia, Irara, Itaberaba, Itagi ,Itagiba, Itamari, Itanagra, Itaparica, Itaquara, Itatim, Itirucu, Itubera, Jacaraci, Jaguaquara, Jaguaripe, Jandaira, Jequie, Jiquirica, Jitauna, Lafaiete Coutinho, Laje, Lajedo do Tabocal, Lamarao, Lauro de Freitas, Licinio de Almeida, Madre de Deus, Maetinga, Manoel Vitorino, Marau, Maracas, Maragogipe, Marcionilio Souza, Mata de Sao Joao, Milagres, Mirante, Mortugaba, Muniz Ferreira, Muritiba, Mutuipe, Nazare, Nilo Pecanha, Nova Ibia, Nova Itarana, Ouricangas, Pedrao, Pindai, Pirai do Norte, Planaltino, Pojuca, Presidente Janio Quadros, Presidente Tancredo Neves, Rafael Jambeiro, Riachao do Jacuipe, Rio Real, Sao Felix, Sao Felipe, Sao Francisco do Conde, Sao Goncalo dos Campos, Sao Miguel das Matas, Sao Sebastiao do Passe, Salinas da Margarida, Salvador, Santa Barbara, Santa Ines, Santa Teresinha, Santanopolis, Santo Amaro, Santo Antonio de Jesus, Santo Estevao, Sapeacu, Saubara, Sebastiao Laranjeiras, Serra Preta, Serrinha, Simoes Filho, Tanhacu, Tanquinho, Taperoa, Teodoro Sampaio, Teofilandia, Teolandia, Terra Nova, Ubaira, Ubaitaba, Ubata, Urandi, Valenca, Varzedo, Vera Cruz, Wenceslau Guimaraes.
  • Espírito Santo State: all areas are at risk for yellow fever transmission.
  • Rio de Janeiro State: all areas are at risk from yellow fever transmission, including the urban areas of Rio de Janeiro City and Niterói.
  • São Paulo State: all areas with the exception of the urban areas of São Paulo City are at risk for yellow fever transmission.


Advice to travellers

Advice to travellers planning to visit areas at risk of yellow fever transmission in Brazil includes:

  • Vaccination against yellow fever at least 10 days prior to the travel;
  • Observation of measures to avoid mosquito bites
  • Awareness of symptoms and signs of yellow fever
  • Travellers through at-risk regions should carefully monitor their health while traveling and upon return from an area at risk for yellow fever transmission. 

The Brazilian Government and the World Health Organisation are watching this situation carefully and will update areas at risk and recommendations as more information becomes available.

Due to the outbreak of yellow fever in some Brazilian states, some countries are demanding that travellers from Brazil provide evidence of vaccination against the disease upon entry, including Panama, Nicaragua, Venezuela, Costa Rica, Ecuador and Cuba. It should be noted that some countries require proof of vaccination from all travellers. We recommend travellers check individual country entry requirements by contacting the embassy of each country they intend to visit.

More information regarding yellow fever is available on the Ministry of Health’s website.

Associated Advisories:

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