Fight against rabies in Minas

You recent data on human rabies in northern Minas reaffirms the importance of primary care also in diseases that were considered to be practically controllable. In Minas Gerais, the last case recorded in humans had taken place ten years ago when a rural farmer was attacked by bats in Rio Casca’s Zona da Mata.

Progress in vaccinating domestic animals was central to disease control. Since 1983, when the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) launched a regional rabies eradication program, the number of human cases in America has dropped from 300 to just six last year.

There have been only 39 records in Brazil since 2010. And two children from Bertópolis (north of Minas) were the only events in the entire country this year until last Wednesday.

In the area, 54 municipalities received guidance to intensify the monitoring of animals suspected of having rabies and intensified surveillance through laboratory experiments. Reinforced treatment for the six municipalities that did not reach 50% coverage in the last vaccination campaign for domestic dogs and cats. Even more attention will be paid to the prevention of bat attacks – Mainly responsible for the last two animal epidemics in 2017 and 2018.

That is why encouraging primary health care is so important, as it promotes public education on the prevention and symptoms of rabies in animals and humans, clarifies the importance of vaccinating dogs and cats in disease control, and provides first calls. Assessing public health reinforces the first and foremost barrier around diseases such as rabies.

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