Brazil to vaccinate entire country against yellow fever

FILE - In this March 17, 2017 file photo, Manuel de Freitas removes his shirt to expose his arm as a health worker fills a syringe with a yellow fever vaccine in Casimiro de Abreu, Brazil. Brazil's health minister said Tuesday, March 20, 2018, that the country is expanding its campaign to vaccinate people against yellow fever to cover the entire country. (AP Photo/Leo Correa, File)

SAO PAULO — Brazil's health minister says the country is expanding its campaign to vaccinate people against yellow fever to cover the entire country.

Ricardo Barros says that by including the final four of Brazil's 27 states, nearly 78 million people will have been vaccinated by 2019.

Barros told a news conference Tuesday that 920 cases of yellow fever have been reported nationwide since July 2017 and 300 people have died from the disease. During the same period last year, 610 cases and 196 deaths were reported.

U.S. health officials last week warned travelers to stay away from certain areas of Brazil if they haven't been vaccinated against yellow fever.

The virus can be spread by the same mosquito that transmits other tropical diseases, including Zika and dengue.

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