Yellow fever vaccine shortage as outbreak in Angola spreads

Angolan military administers a yellow fever vaccine to a child at 'Quilometro 30' market, Luanda, Angola.

Story highlights

  • Angola is experiencing the worst outbreak of yellow fever in three decades
  • They are running low on a supply of vaccines

(CNN)More than 1,100 people have been diagnosed with yellow fever in Angola since December, according to the World Health Organization, and at least 178 have died. It's the worst outbreak of yellow fever in the country in three decades, and the supply of vaccines is running low.

The outbreak began in the capital of Luanda but has now spread to at least 10 of the 18 provinces in the country.
"With the majority of cases reported in ... Luanda, the situation is more dangerous and difficult to contain because the disease can spread easily from one person to another. We are already seeing cases spread to a number of provinces outside Luanda," Dr. Sergio Yactayo, WHO expert on epidemic diseases, said in a WHO publication.
    Of greater concern to health officials is that China, the Democratic Republic of Congo and Kenya have reported cases they suspect were imported from Angola. Namibia and Zambia, which border Angola, also are on high alert, the WHO said.
    "The worry is that this could result in a widespread outbreak of yellow fever in Angola, Asia and other areas," Dr. Tom Frieden, director of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, told CNN.