10:14 pm - Wednesday 19 September 2018

Tackling rabies

By Amalawi - Wed Jun 22, 9:21 am

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AN EAST Dorset charity is leading a project aimed at tackling rabies in Malawi.

Dr Luke Gamble, CEO of the Cranborne-based Worldwide Veterinary Service, heads the teams from the UK for the second year of the Blantyre City vaccination programme.

The WVS is supported by the key international sponsors Dogs Trust and MSD Animal Health for their project – which comprises more than 70 staff members and volunteers from across 14 countries – to target the issue in Malawi.

three-dogs-ff

Dr Kate Shervell, programme international director, said: “During 2015, we vaccinated over 70 per cent of the dogs in Blantyre City and district – the required coverage to ensure prevention of disease transmission. This month we repeated the mass vaccination of the city and achieved over 35,600 dog vaccinations in 20 days, which is an improvement on the coverage in 2015 and will be a big step towards a rabies free city.
“We’ll begin the second year of the Blantyre rural district programme from June.”

Part of the programme includes visiting schools to teach children how to behave around dogs and what to do after a bite, to prevent the spread of the disease. There are also clinics set up to provide free vaccinations.

In Malawi, approximately 480 people die every year from rabies which is a preventable disease through vaccines.

Dr Gamble founded Mission Rabies which was launched in India, September 2013.

Since then, Mission Rabies has seen over 350,000 dogs vaccinated, 50,000 dogs neutered, and 500,000 children educated about the disease.

 

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