China attracts more and more international travelers in recent years. Some of them are afraid of unexpected infectious diseases in the country so that they would like to know whether certain vaccination is needed before departure. There are also some people from infectious disease areas concerning they may confront certain problem when getting into China. The information below solve all the confusions:

Vaccine Needed for People Traveling to China
At present, China has no severe infectious disease, so no specific inoculation like malaria vaccine is needed before heading to the country. Anyway, all international travelers should note that yellow fever vaccine is mandatory for people coming from yellow fever prevalent area, including residents of the contaminated areas and travelers who plan to directly head for China from these areas. These people have to present a valid vaccine certificate of yellow fever upon entry as well as their other travel documents.

What is yellow fever? Why is the vaccine certificate of it strictly required?
Yellow fever, also yellow plague or yellow jack, is an acute virus disease. The infected person would have the symptoms of fever, chillness, loss of appetite, nausea, pain in muscle (especially in back) and headache. These symptoms usually improve in 5 days, while some people have a fever again after 1-2 days, following abdominal pain and probably leading to kidney failure. The yellow fever now widely spreads in Africa and Central & South America. As it causes high mortality and is of strong infectiousness, it has been listed as one of the quarantinable diseases by World Health Organization (WHO). That’s why a valid vaccine certificate of yellow fever is required upon arriving in China.

What are so-called yellow fever prevalent areas?
According to the official data of the WHO, 44 countries below are confirmed as yellow fever areas:
33 countries in Africa: Benin, Chad, Congo, The Public of Guinea, Equatorial Guinea, Ethiopia, Ghana, The Republic of Ivory Coast, Nigeria, Sierra Leone, Sudan, Uganda, Zaire, Cape Verde, Burundi, The State of Eritrea, Gambia, Guinea-Bissau, Rwanda, Sao Tome and Principe, Somalia, Tanzania, Cameroon, Kenya, Liberia, Mali, Angola, Burkina Faso, Gabon, Mauritania, Senegal, Togo, Central African Republic

11 countries in Central and South America: Brazil, Bolivia, British Guiana, Columbia, The Republic of Ecuador, French Guiana, Panama, Peru, Surinam, Paraguay, Venezuela

How to know one’s yellow fever inoculation is valid?
The yellow fever vaccine is valid for 10 year since the day of inoculation. If the second inoculation follows in no more 10 years, the period of validity of the vaccine is 10 year since re-inoculation. People from the yellow fever prevalent area should note the validity of their vaccination before departure.

What will happen if one has invalid yellow fever vaccine certificate?
The incubation period of yellow fever is 6 days. If one holds an invalid vaccination certificate upon arrival, the Inspection & Quarantine Authority can have a check-up detention till the sixth day, counting from the day he/she left the contaminated place. Or directly ask him/her to inoculate immediately in local travel healthcare center and then check after six days. Here are the locations and contact of the corresponding centers in three major port cities in China:
Beijing International Travel Healthcare Center: No. 10, Dezheng Road, Haidian District
Telephone Number: 86-010-82403675

Shanghai International Travel Healthcare Center: No. 15, Jinbang Road, Changning District
Telephone Number: Tel:86-021-62685072

Guangzhou International Travel Healthcare Center: No. 207, West Longkou Road, Tianhe District
Telephone Number: 86-020-87537322 & 86-020-87548300

Tip: Although vaccinations against severe disease are not needed for traveling to China, some immunizations are recommended for the sake of your health. The routine immunizations include influenza, Tdap, MMR, pneumonia and chickenpox. Other recommended travel immunizations are jepatitis A, hepatitis B, typhoid, polio, Japanese encephalitis and rabies. For more information, we suggested that you contact a travel medicine specialist. He/She can advise on the management of unexpected diarrhea, animal bites, blood clots in the legs, and travel health insurance during your trip.

Vaccination Inoculation for Chinese People
In China, there are some mandatory vaccines that have to be inoculated for all residents when they are newly born, including vaccinations against hepatitis, poliomyelitis, bacillus calmette guerin (BCG), pertussis, diphtheria, tetanus, measles, encephalitis, A group of epidemic cerebrospinal meningitis, A + C group of epidemic cerebrospinal meningitis, which are all for free. Some other vaccines are also suggested to inoculate, but they are not mandatory ones, including vaccines against rubella, mumps, pneumonia and chickenpox.