WHO has published Winning the war against yellow fever. Excerpt:
Four months have passed without a single case of yellow fever related to the outbreak in Angola and the Democratic Republic of the Congo, thanks to the joint response activities of national health authorities, local health workers, WHO and partners.
"It is incredible that such a large and diverse group of partners have come together to protect people against yellow fever," said Dr Matshidiso Moeti, WHO Regional Director for Africa. "I’m also proud of the Organization-wide support. Staff from across all three levels of WHO – country offices, the Regional Office for Africa and headquarters – have come together under one integrated incident management system. Each level has played an important role: starting from the country level where the outbreak is occurring, to the Regional Office for oversight, command and control and the global level coordination support."
The outbreak, which was first detected in Angola in December 2015, had caused 962 confirmed cases of yellow fever across the two countries (884 in Angola 78 in DRC) by 16 November 2016, with more than 7300 suspected cases. The last confirmed case reported in Angola was on 23 June and DRC’s last case was on 12 July.
More than 41 000 volunteers and 8000 vaccination teams were involved in the mass immunization campaigns. The vaccines used came from a global stockpile co-managed by Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF), International Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC), UNICEF and WHO.
In the first 6 months of 2016 alone, the partners delivered more than 19 million doses of the vaccine – three times the 6 million doses usually put aside for a possible outbreak. Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance financed a significant proportion of the vaccines.
"This is the result of a gargantuan effort," said Dr Margaret Lamunu, Yellow Fever Incident Manager at WHO HQ. "30 million people have been vaccinated across the 2 countries – can you imagine the sheer logistics of getting vaccines out to that many people? Many of these people live in dense urban areas or remote rural settings. But we worked tirelessly with the respective governments and our partners – notably Gavi, UNICEF, CDC and all the GOARN partners – and together, we pulled it off."