‘99pc rabies cases caused by dog bite’

Updated September 29, 2017

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ISLAMABAD: Rabies is a preventable disease transmitted to humans through the bite of infected animals. However, in Pakistan 99pc cases are caused by dog bites.

This was stated by Executive Director National Institute of Health Brig Dr Aamer Ikram while speaking to participants of a walk held at the institute on World Rabies Day.

The day was observed with the theme ‘Zero Rabies by 2030’.

Dr Aamer said that across the world infected dogs, cats and wild animals were major cause of the disease. He emphasized that precious human lives could be saved through raising public awareness against rabies.

“Mostly children and residents of the rural areas are infected with the disease. If an animal bites, wound should be immediately washed with water and soap. Moreover, people should have vaccine to avoid rabies,” he said.

While advising people who have pets, he said that people should not allow their pets to roam in the streets, keep them clean and give them quality food and shelter.

“Anti-rabies injection should be given to the dog every year. Moreover, a collar should be placed around the neck of dogs so that they can be recognised as pet,” he said.

“NIH is presently producing Cell Culture Anti-Rabies Vaccine and Anti-Rabies Serum (ARS). Both products are supplied on demand to all provinces, AJK, Armed Forces, private sector companies and others,” Dr Aamer said.

Later on participants held a walk in the campus and the mobile unit of NIH was sent outside to distribute printed awareness material to the educational institutes and general public.

Keeping in view the increased demands, NIH is in process of enhancing the production of ARS. NIH also provides diagnostic facility for Rabies Antibodies Titre (RAT) after vaccination.

Published in Dawn, September 29th, 2017