7 June 2013: At the end of May, more than 100 cases of yellow fever were reported in the South Ari district of Ethiopia’s South Omo zone. Thirty-nine of these cases were fatal.
Yellow fever requires an immediate response as it is highly transmissible, causing massive outbreaks and alarming fatality rates. Yellow fever cannot be treated, but it can be prevented through a vaccine. When the epidemic occurs in unvaccinated populations, case-fatality rates may exceed 50 per cent.
Therefore, the Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF) provided a rapid response grant of US$ 1,255,769 to the World Health Organization (WHO). WHO will implement an immediate vaccination campaign benefitting an estimated 665,140 people in the high-risk zone. WHO will also strengthen the surveillance of the outbreak.