Wednesday, August 17, 2022

Central and North East District top the list on rabies infections

The Director of Veterinary Services, Dr Lethogile Modisa, has revealed that the North East and the Central Districts are the worst hit areas in the country with the highest rates of rabies infections in animals.

He was addressing participants in Francistown during the World Rabies Day on Friday.

“Rabies infections in Botswana remain a challenge, especially in the Central and North East Districts which are the most affected areas. It is high time that Batswana stand up together so that the spread of this infection is prevented,” he said.

Rabies is a deadly virus that is found in animals and can be transmitted from animals to humans, most commonly by animal bites from dogs, cats and even some wild animals.

Although he could not provide statistics at the time, he said that these infections are worrisome as they are hazardous to the lives of humans.

Dr Modisa warned participants that rabies is a very deadly disease which should not be taken for granted as it continues to take lives across the world. He added that one of the main challenges is that the disease spreads very fast among animals, leading to the infection in humans.

“I want to plead with members of the public to report rabies disease or symptoms once they detect it in animals They should report it to relevant authorities, such as the veterinary services department, wildlife department, the police and even the health departments as these departments work together in the fight against this disease. It is for all of us to pull together in the fight against this disease or else we are fighting a losing battle,” he said.

 The Director of the Department of Wildlife and National Parks, Dr Mmadi Reuben, who was among the invited guests also told the participants that wild animals also play a role in the spread of rabies. He said that the increasing human population and the subsequent human need for land continue to gradually bring humans into closer contact with the wild animals.

“Closer interactions of any kind have the potential to increase the risk of rabies transmission from wild animals to people. Rabies disease transmission can be either direct or indirect through a rabid wild animal infecting a domestic animal,” he warned.

In conclusion, Dr Mmadi said that it is of utmost importance that the public is educated on wildlife contribution to rabies transmission.

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