Official advice for New Zealanders living and travelling overseas

News features

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, and continuing through 2017 the Brazilian Ministry of Health reported outbreaks of yellow fever in several eastern states, including areas where yellow fever was not previously considered a risk. In response, the list of areas where yellow fever vaccination is recommended for international travelers have been expanded.

Yellow fever vaccine is now recommended for all travelers over 9 months of age going to the following areas by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention: the entire states of Acre, Amapá, Amazonas, Distrito Federal (including the capital city of Brasília), Goiás, Maranhão, Mato Grosso, Mato Grosso do Sul, Minas Gerais, Pará, Rondônia, Roraima, and Tocantins, and designated areas of the following states: Bahia, Paraná, Piauí, Rio Grande do Sul, Santa Catarina, and São Paulo (state). Vaccination is also recommended for travelers visiting Iguaçu Falls.

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

Advice to travellers
Travellers planning to visit areas at risk of yellow fever transmission in Brazil should consider:

  • Vaccination against yellow fever at least 10 days prior to travel;
  • Taking measures to avoid mosquito bites
  • Be aware of symptoms and signs of yellow fever
  • When travelling in at-risk regions, carefully monitor your own health, as well as  upon your return. 

The Brazilian Government and the World Health Organisation are watching this situation carefully and will update areas of 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 Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, Ecuador, Nicaragua, Panama and Venezuela. It should be noted that some countries require proof of vaccination from all travellers. We recommend checking individual country entry requirements before travelling by contacting the embassy of each country you intend to visit.

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

Associated Advisories:

Share this page:

Share this page:

Latest News features