Yellow Fever

What is yellow fever?

Yellow fever is a disease transmitted by the Aedes mosquito. The disease itself consists of two phases; the first phase consisting of initially mild symptoms, such as headache and fever with subsequent improvement. The second phase of the disease is characterized by high fever, yellow eyes and skin (jaundice), abdominal pain and bleeding. Up to 50% of severe cases are fatal during the second phase of the disease.



In which countries does yellow fever occur?

Yellow fever is found in Sub-Saharan Africa as well as in Latin America. More detailed information can be found on HealthyTravel.

When and how often should I be vaccinated against yellow fever?

Vaccination is only recommended if you are planning on travelling to countries where yellow fever is present. However if you are traveling to an area where yellow fever is present, the vaccine is important because yellow fever is a life-threatening viral infection. For Europe and Asia no vaccination is necessary. In many cases, a single yellow fever vaccination is sufficient for lifelong protection. In certain cases a booster vaccination is advisable after 10 years or later. Some countries require a booster vaccination upon entry after 10 years despite the WHO's 1-dose  recommendation. Since the yellow fever vaccine is a live attenuated vaccine, it should not be given during pregnancy or if you are immunocompromised.


Vaccination reactions are usually mild and may manifest as headache/limb pain and a slight fever. In very rare cases, serious reactions to the vaccination can occur. This risk can be additionally reduced by a careful clarification before each vaccination by a travel medicine center or by a physician with appropriate expertise. Therefore, vaccination in Switzerland may only be carried out at such sites.

71 CHF
plus consultation and injection fee

What else should I know about the yellow fever vaccine?

  • The protection takes effect 10 days after the first vaccination.

  • The yellow fever vaccination must be documented in an international vaccination booklet to avoid problems entering your travel destination.

  • One of the first signs of a local yellow fever outbreak for people living in yellow fever areas is increased deaths of monkeys in adjacent forests.

  • Further information on the yellow fever vaccination can be found on the website of the FOPH or HealthyTravel.

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