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Yellow fever vaccination valid for life - the exceptions

17-10-17

Image 1/1 : a picture of a bug

The WHO declared in June 2017 that the certificate of vaccination against yellow fever is valid for life. In some cases however, it is unsure whether after a single vaccination offers lifelong protection. This is an update with the Belgian national guidelines.

For some people, a yellow fever vaccination is not valid for life, but for a period of one year. For these persons, a single booster is recommended before their next exposure to yellow fever:

  • Pregnant persons
  • Age < 24 months (revaccination is recommended after the age of 24 months)
  • Interval of less than 28 days between the administration of the YF vaccine and another live vaccine (eg. measles)

In some people there is concern about immune response (people with reduced immunity), and booster vaccination or testing of neutralising antibodies is recommended after ten years:

  • Due to HIV (irrespective of the CD4 count, booster/testing is recommended after 10y)
  • Due to medication and others (booster/testing is recommended after 10y)
  • Persons who received a vaccination against yellow fever before they had a bone marrow transplantation (revaccination is indicated, if no counter indications)

In case of high risk of exposure to yellow fever, a single booster (or testing of neutralising antibodies) should be considered after 10 years.

  • Labo workers handling wild type yellow fever
  • Staying for extended period in endemic region
  • Travelling to high risk region such as rural Western Africa or an epidemic region
  • ...

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