By NewsDesk  @bactiman63

The Pan American Health Organization (PAHO/WHO) spoke of the success rabies elimination in the Americas days before World Rabies Day 2020 on September 28.

Western hemisphere map
Public domain image/ E Pluribus Anthony

“On our continent, the incidence of dog-mediated human rabies has been reduced by almost 98%, from a record of 300 cases in 1983 to just 3 cases in 2019,” said Dr Ottorino Cosivi, director of the Pan American Centre for Foot and Mouth Disease and Veterinary Public Health (PANAFTOSA) of the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO/WHO).

Cosivi said this achievement “has been made possible by solidarity between countries, the exchange of lessons learned, the identification and prioritization of risks, as well as epidemiological monitoring and monitoring actions in people and reservoirs.”

A continental milestone in the fight against rabies took place in 2019 when Mexico became the first country in the world to receive official validation as a country free from human rabies transmitted by dogs.

“These achievements are due to the commitment of country health authorities, the technical dedication of health workers, population awareness and the coordination of PAHO/WHO’s Regional Elimination Program,” said Dr. Julio Cesar Pompei, PANAFTOSA’s Zoonosis Coordinator.

World Rabies Day 2020 is observed every 28 September to promote the fight against rabies, raise awareness of its prevention and celebrate achievements.

This year’s theme is “End Rabies: Collaborate and Vaccinate”.