Every September 28, the World Health Organization (WHO) observes World Rabies Day, which seeks to raise awareness on rabies prevention in an effort to quash the disease.
According to WHO, 95 percent of the world’s rabies cases are reported in Asia and Africa.
“Rabies is a 100 percent vaccine-preventable disease,” the organization notes on their website. “Elimination programs often revolve around mass dog vaccination campaigns, where at least 70 percent of the dog population should be covered in order to break the cycle of transmission in dogs, and to humans.”
Recent data from the Department of Health-Region VI (DOH-6) found the number of rabies-related fatalities in Negros Occidental at four this year.
DOH-6 Regional Rabies Program coordinator Ame Liz Mardoquio said, from January to June of this year, the department recorded nearly 52,000 dog bite cases in the Western Visayas.
The regional department also adheres to the 70 percent threshold recommended by WHO. Mardoquio noted, they are informing all local government units in the region to step up their rabies vaccination programs by targeting a 70 percent inoculation rate./WDJ